Readers React: A refresher on the 4th Amendment for deputies who pull over thousands of Latino drivers
To the editor: Reading about a team of Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies stopping and searching cars driven by Latinos at a disproportionately high rate on a stretch of the 5 Freeway, I feel it bears repeating what the 4th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution says:
“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”
So why are deputies allowed to search peoples’ cars during a traffic stop without sufficient probable cause or a warrant? I missed the part when we gave up this right.
The deputies who do this should be punished, not the drivers.
Robert Bubnovich, Irvine
To the editor: Most illegal drug imports to California come from south of the U.S. border. Most of these drugs are from the Mexican cartels. They use the 5 Freeway to transport the drugs north.
Sheriff’s deputies are targeting likely vehicles based on their expertise. Most stops don’t result in drug arrests, but even in light of who and where the drugs are coming from, the Los Angeles Times raises suspicion about law enforcement targeting the most likely vehicles.
How about this: Have the California Highway Patrol stop Norwegians who are entering the state from Oregon and search their vehicles. The occupants are almost certain to be white, and eventually the numbers will even out.
Then you can get back to reporting real news.
Jack Berkus, Laguna Niguel
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