Cops, Conservation Officers and Probable Cause

Discussion in 'Community Forum' started by katlynn, Dec 2, 2017.

  1. JDMiller

    JDMiller 12 pointer

    Jun 12, 2005
    " Between the Rivers "
    I see and understand views on both sides of this discussion.

    Which in the case of your LE acquaintance ... "using CO's" to enter property .... to me there's more to it than what he explained. As any sworn peace officer as described by the KRS 150 can enforce and enter private property (land) using KRS 150 as the pretense to do so. Be it city, county... state police...ect.

    Where there possibly more to the story here..... CO's to my knowledge or has been eluded to.... have a bit more leeway concerning searches. Being if someone had a cooler, bag, game vest...ect.... they can search / check for harvested game without consent or warrant. In turn this may give them (CO's) access to private property concerning a dwelling / structure more-so than other LE agencies.

    Which I'll reiterate...I'm just speculating here and not implying that its a fact concerning searches. As there's the situation of probable cause / reasonable suspicion that can give any LE a bit more legal loop-hole concerning this topic.

    In my opinion here it is a catch 22 of sorts as its a necessary tool for the CO's to do their jobs. Being as I stated back in that older thread I posted.... I don't reside on our farm in north Christian ... heck I'm 1.5 hrs away. So if a CO were to notice or have suspicion of something illegal it hunting, poaching or otherwise... I'm more than happy they have the ability to enter the property without my consent or warrant.

    Being we all read every year on here countless complaints of poaching, trespassing, thieves, meth-heads as such on private properties ... we all want less of all of it. But when it gets down to giving the CO's / LE in general the ability to do so... we feel our rights are being infringed upon. Which could this "power" be abused... or even get to the point of harassment.... sure. Been a few circumstances it has been ....and there's always situations of overzealous attitudes with some LE including CO's. However maybe I'm a bit over trusting.... I believe as a whole the good outweighs the bad from this perspective. Which for the most part my contact with the CO's has always been professional and courteous.

    Also ...considering the lack of CO's across the state.... I don't think its a case where their entering any property without a complaint of some type or request to do so. Being... I just don't think their randomly roaming countless private properties. It would have to be a circumstances of reasonable suspicion that some type of possible illegal activity was occurring.

    Just my two cents worth.
    wprebeck likes this.
  2. EdLongshanks

    EdLongshanks 12 pointer

    Nov 16, 2013
    Northern Kentucky
    I just think it's a bad policy to allow any law enforcement onto private property without a warrant or consent.
  3. forager

    forager 8 pointer

    Mar 5, 2017
    planet earth
    In every profession, you have heroes and you have zeros. Law enforcement is no different.

    An influential mentor in my teens was a conservation officer. He encouraged my interest in wildlife conservation and science, and while that career ultimately did not play out, I am indebted to him for the time that he spent explaining the law and his knowledge of the natural world. He was a dedicated man who put himself in danger many times to bust deer poachers, and had idiots shoot at his house multiple times. I lost touch with him, but the Commonwealth is a better place because of his contributions.

    Fast forward a couple of decades to the shore of a public lake. A CO got out his truck and started checking fishing licenses. I figured that my turn was coming up as he worked his way around the lake, so I pulled my license out of my wallet in advance. Across the lake, the warden seemed upset with a particular group of people, and I figured that a bust was coming. He looked in their coolers, looked at their licenses, stomped around in an angry manner. I could hear him yelling. "This will suck when he gets to me," I thought, but continued fishing anyway. Eventually, the officer angrily stomped back to his vehicle and sped away.

    Officer McGrumpypants never came to check to my license. The group of fishermen passed by me on the way back to their truck, and I asked them what happened. One of them laughed and said that the CO probably thought that because they were all Mexican, he could bust them for not having licenses, but they all had licenses and were within the legal limit for that lake. Checking for compliance is one thing, but the temper tantrum and bullying from the CO was pathetic. I wound up giving them a nice catfish for their trouble to add to some HUGE bluegill that they had reeled in.
  4. That's the thing I'm afraid a lot of folks don't understand. I'm not anti-cops at all, just pro United States Constitution but not all cops are. There are drug dealers, murderers, rapists, thiefs, you name it wearing a badge just like there are not wearing one. Just because you wear a badge doesn't make you above questioning but as we all witnessed here, a lot of them freak out when questioned at all. I think my issue with this goes back to me questioning a couple Philadelphia, PA criminals, I mean cops, who were hassling me when I was serving in the navy. They slammed my head into the hood of their cars calling me hillbilly Popeye because of my accent and uniform and told me I was about a second from a bullet to my temple. As a naive young man I had been brainwashed to believe they were all upright, just men and I believe most are, but a good portion are crooked as Hillary and must be questioned and thoroughly policed themselves. Therefore, giving them a license to violate civil rights is full blown retarded imho.
  5. forager

    forager 8 pointer

    Mar 5, 2017
    planet earth
    I will say that the screening and training has gotten better with law enforcement over the years. A retired cop told me that the driving factor behind this paradigm is that LE agencies don't want to pay out huge settlements to victims and their families, so they train their officers better.

    Another retired cop that I know still volunteers to serve on hiring boards for applicants. He can't stand the few who slip through the cracks due to politics, and says that those officers escalate the situation and endanger fellow cops and community with their behavior. His pet peeve is the officers who are more worried about what kind of gun that they can carry over practicing techniques of deescalating situations and serving the community.

    So there are good folks out there who need to recognized, but the bad ones need to be named, shamed and removed from the force, instead of being supported by the institution. The same goes for lawyers, doctors, teachers, skilled labor and other professions.
  6. katlynn

    katlynn 6 pointer

    Sep 20, 2010
    Central Kentucky
    Amen, brother. This is why I’ll never give consent for a search or entry into my home.
  7. JR in KY

    JR in KY 12 pointer

    Jan 25, 2006
    The Occupied South
    Mr. Green Britches doesn't HAVE to be an Asshole.
    But a lot of them Choose to be.
    Just do your damjob and be respectful.
  8. Fat Tony

    Fat Tony 12 pointer

    If you drive a car you subject yourself to that every time you are behind the wheel. It takes about 2 cells of grey matter to get around probable cause if the LEO decides not to tell the whole truth. Sucks but true.

    Best to just not break the law and then not worry about illegal stops.
    invasion36 and 1wildcatfan like this.
  9. Imho there's a difference in getting pulled over while behind the wheel driving on a public roadway and some CO gallivanting around my property uninvited without a warrant. Not a lot but some. I don't reckon my constitutional rights include a clause about having or not having anything to hide as a requirement to exercise.
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2017
    Nock, bondhu and barney like this.
  10. bondhu

    bondhu 12 pointer

    Jul 3, 2015
    Battle Run
    This was our argument 2 summers ago as we where setting a set of concrete steps at the house we built with a backhoe. Black helicopter fly's real low over my property and circle's us. As the helicopter went to circle for the second time 2 of the 3 of said party draw pistols and folks in said helicopter closed doors and moved on. After discussion with the authority's that we are not allowed to draw on black helicopter. My reply was where's that written ? They went on to say they where looking for marijuana. My reply was no one served warrant and I was not notified of the intent of helicopter. I mean why would the helicopter turn for a second fly over, a mowed yard (4 acres) and folks working at the front porch of the house. As far as we knew things were fixin to get viet congish.:)
    KYote-Krusher and barney like this.
  11. bigbonner

    bigbonner 10 pointer

    Aug 5, 2015
    Isn't there a certain distance that Choppers and air planes are supposed to stay off the ground while flying over private property ?
    I have watched them fly over my property really low and at some times blowing corn down . Wouldn't that be considered illegal search?
    I would rather them drive up and ask me to walk my property and I would drive them anywhere they wanted to look as I have nothing to hide . But by flying like they do is like you are a criminal and we are searching whether you like it or not .
  12. I've always thought flying around searching private property was the very opitome of illegal, warrantless trespassing. There isn't a single "yeah but" at the end of any of the Bill of Rights. "Shall not be infringed" with zero yeah buts. I'll give the 2nd Amendment as example. Show me one place where the government is granted permission to restrict arms one iota in the Constitution. It doesn't exist and I'll tell you why it doesn't. Having the very entity the Amendment was designed to protect We The People from regulating said Amendment makes zero sense. You have essentially neutered its entire purpose. Same with illegal searches. Having the very entity the 4th is designed to protect us from deciding when they themselves don't need one is about the dumbest thing I've ever heard. Think about it.
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2017
    KYote-Krusher and barney like this.
  13. forager

    forager 8 pointer

    Mar 5, 2017
    planet earth
    This is an interesting read on the matter:
  14. KYBOY

    KYBOY 12 pointer

    Apr 21, 2005
    Ive heard about this a few times in the past myself but never known someone that did it personally..
    Theres good and bad in every profession and LE is no different. Let no one tell you otherwise.. Ive known a bunch of wardens personally from travelling around the state to trappers meets and doing demos at other functions.. Almost all of them have been good guys, but I have meet a few that were not.. Just that simple..
    When I was at the federal LEO academy most people I meet were good folk,easy going and fun to be around.. Then you had that small percentage of "Robo's" that no one, not even fellow officers likes to be around at work..
    Im real big on leaving others alone and having them leave me alone but on the other hand I normally dont have a problem with a LEO checking me for compliance on whatever reg/rule because I have nothing to worry about..
    There is absolutely no reason for a LEo to not be professional in regular day to day patrols and activities.The vast majority will be I think.. No need to be an arse without provocation. Those that do just make the profession as a whole look bad.
    forager likes this.
  15. WildmanWilson

    WildmanWilson 12 pointer

    Dec 26, 2004
    Western Ky.
    I stopped and got a chocolate milk and candy bar after leaving the bowling alley one night. As I pull out a cop comes flying up and rides me for several blocks. I told my buddy to watch this.....I tilt my head back and take a big swig of milk and before the bottle was off my lips he hit the blue lights.

    He came to my window and I asked what I did wrong. He said I was crowding the center line. He asked if I’d been drinking and I said yes. Chocolate milk. I could see he was instantly pissed. He checked my car over and made me rev the car up to listen to the exhaust. I had factory duels on my Hurst Olds and they were loud but I’d never push it down too much even when he told me too several times.

    He used the phony crowding the centerline excuse for nothing more than to fish for some violations. As far as I know everything on this side of the line is mine. I never crossed it anyway or was weaving. He just thought he was going to get a guy drinking and driving and needed an excuse to pull me over.

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