Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Santa Cruz Police Dept. Now Engaging in Pre Crime Arrest Based on Data from a Computer Program

                 Do you remember the Tom Cruz movie minority report? It was a movie based on pre crime arrest detaining a person before they commit the crime. it sounded science fiction previously until now. Now Pre crime is part of the big brother police state. The city of Santa Cruz ,Californian now has a pre crime unit using a computer program to determine were the next crime will take place. Does this mean the police department has a crystal ball in the form of a computer program to predict crime? Can we base probable cause based on a computer program when a crime has not been committed?

                Let use some common sense to see this for what it is. This is a revenue generator and has nothing to do with protecting property. Based on this pre crime data. If some buys a six pack of beer and drives home to drink it without opening a can. Do you arrest him for a DUI or Drunk in public before he gets behind the wheel or takes a walk later in the evening. Based on just buying a six pack of beer using the new predictive policing methods, they might have to arrest the man for DUI before he gets behind the wheel. What are they going to do next?Will they seize cash without cause in the name of the war on drugs because they might buy drugs with that money when there is no proof.

                All this fancy technology to invade our privacy by listening to our conversations on the phone,being online or just pointing a device in the direction to see what people are saying may seem to make their jobs easier. Even using computer programs to predict crime before it happens does have me concerned. Even the best computer programs cannot predict the weather. How can they predict crime to happen before it starts? Do the police know the long term consequences setting the precedent of making pre crime arrest based on computer data? They have also taken an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution too.With all the training they receive, protecting people's rights seems to fall to the wayside in the name of the war on crime.

               I see this pre crime policing or predictive policing is another program that can be abused to go after dissidents and political enemies. These pre crime computer programs can be manipulated to get a desired result to suit an political agenda. If they can hack and change an election using Diebold Voting machines to get a desired result to steal an election. Then they can also manipulate the data to make Mother Theresa into a common criminal.

               The Santa Cruz Police department and this crazy scheme. I say there is no excuse for ignorance of the law.  They took an oath to protect our freedoms and not to attack them. This is why we have a bill of rights amended to our Constitution. To protect and restrain the government from abusing the citizens. We still have a right to be left alone and just because some computer program predicts a crime. It does not give them the implied authority to harass people because they might commit a crime based on data from a computer. The Constitution is still the law of the land and we should assert our rights to remind the police we still have rights no matter what new Police fad of predictive policing they try to execute against us. It is my hope that this pre crime policing gets struck down in court before the real abuses start using such a bad precedent.

1 comment:

  1. "Can we base probable cause based on a computer program when a crime has not been committed?"

    Well, according to the article you posted, yes. Did you actually read it?

    "Santa Cruz police spokesman Zach Friend said that they have had some good early results, as the new model has been accurate over 70 percent of the time."

    And there is of course, a world of difference between "pre-crime" of people vs pre-crime of a place, which is little more than statistical data on high crime areas.

    But hey, why bother to actual read an article that you yourself posted?