Thread: Off-duty cops collect DNA samples at Alabama roadblocks

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  1. #1 Off-duty cops collect DNA samples at Alabama roadblocks 
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    Why does this creep me out?

    Off-duty cops collect DNA samples at Alabama roadblocks

    Off-duty cops in two counties in Alabama spent the weekend collecting saliva and blood samples from drivers at roadblocks.

    According to Lt. Freddie Turrentine with the St. Clair County Sheriff’s Department, drivers were asked to voluntarily offer samples of their saliva and blood for a study being conducted by the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation.

    The drivers were compensated for their samples.

    “They’ve got big signs up that says ‘paid volunteer survey’ and if they want to participate they pull over there and they ask them questions and if they are willing to give them a mouth swab they give them $10 and if they are willing to give them a blood sample they give them $50. And if they don’t do anything they drive off,” Turrentine explained to The Daily Caller.

    Turrentine said that St. Clair County had five roadblocks from Friday afternoon through the early morning hours of Sunday. He added that Bibb County also had roadblocks of this kind.

    Turrentine said that Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs asked the county to participate and that the funding for the study is coming from the National Highway Safety Administration.

    “What they are trying to do is 60 sites across the country,” he said, explaining the study will be conducted from June to October and is meant to get a better understanding of inebriation patterns. (SEE ALSO: IRS seeks to buy hidden cameras, surveillance equipment)

    “They are trying to get 75,000 participants with anonymous donations of blood — and they don’t know whose blood or whose swab it is — and they are trying to say, ‘OK, after this hour at night, out of these 75,000 people 10 percent of them had alcohol in their blood or 12 percent of them had some kind of narcotic in their blood. That is all they’re doing, for impaired driving,’” he explained.

    Turrentine said he did not know how many people deputies sampled over the weekend but said that St. Clair County had completed its portion of the study and would not be putting up more roadblocks of that kind. He added that this was not the first time the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation had conducted a study in the county. The last such test was in 2007.

    The Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation did not immediately respond to request for comment, nor did the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs.

    The incident did cause a stir on social media with people voicing concern about the roadblocks.

    Update — Tuesday 12:47 p.m. EST: After publication of this article, Bibb County Sheriff Keith Hannah offered more details about the roadblocks in his county Tuesday. Hannah told TheDC that there were five roadblocks in Bibb County this weekend. He stressed that the samples were given voluntarily and that this was not the first time the county had participated in a study of this kind.

    “It was a voluntary thing and they were compensated if they gave a DNA sample or a blood sample. The study group compensated them for it. If the motorist wanted to participate they could. If they wanted to go on, they were free to do so,” Hannah said Tuesday.
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  2. #2  
    Senior Member Generation Why?'s Avatar
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    Nope.
    “A creative man is motivated by the desire to achieve, not by the desire to beat others.”Ayn Rand

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  3. #3 From the Houston chronicle 
    Ancient Fire Breather Retread's Avatar
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    An open letter to the NSA

    Dear National Security Agency,

    Rough week, huh? Here in just a few days you've gone from being an obscure tentacle of government that almost nobody knew or cared about to being known as the Gladys Kravitz of federal bureaucracy, everybody's least-favorite snoopy neighbor.

    Oh, I know. On that taking-everybody's-phone-records thing, I know you say you're only looking at "metadata." (For the record, that would be a great name for a dating site. Way better than OkCupid.)

    And you say you're only looking at foreign-American interactions on Google and Facebook and everywhere else through the PRISM program. I share a mortgage with a noncitizen. Does that mean you're looking at the pictures of my kitten on Facebook? I also post photos of vegetables from my garden. It is not, I swear, a code, like one if by land, two if by sea. Sometimes a zucchini is just a zucchini.

    By the way, your director is named Clapper. Who is your spokesman, Chia Pet?

    Nevertheless, I feel it is my civic duty to point out that you're going about this all the wrong way. Have you ever even met a real American?

    Here's the thing: The part we hate about your snooping is that it's all give (our side) and all take (your side).

    Americans are more than willing to give away their personal information, trust me. Then just want a little sumpin'-sumpin' for it. Anybody with a Kroger card or a Spec's key or membership in any one of a thousand different affinity programs has already made that trade-off.

    We are, after all, a nation of Esaus, more than willing to sell off our birthright for a mess of pottage.

    You want to get your federal nose up in my business? How about offering me some little tax credit for it? A free night at a national park?

    Make this program voluntary and you'll have all but about 32 people give up their info. And of those 32 people, a lot of them will have the last name Paul. The rest are your problem children, right there.

    The argument that we shouldn't worry about you peeping at our digits if we're not doing anything bad is just plain wrong. I swear I'm not trying to sneak an extra scoop of Blue Bell Homemade Vanilla onto my hot apple pie, but that doesn't mean I want you standing outside my kitchen window with a pair of binoculars, either. It's just creepy.

    We used to believe that privacy, while not strictly embedded in the Fourth and Fifth Amendments, was nevertheless implicit among our rights.

    Here is what Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis wrote in his dissent in the case of Olmstead v. United States, a wiretapping case, in 1928:

    "The makers of our Constitution undertook to secure conditions favorable to the pursuit of happiness. They recognized the significance of man's spiritual nature, of his feelings and of his intellect. They knew that only a part of the pain, pleasure and satisfactions of life are to be found in material things. They sought to protect Americans in their beliefs, their thoughts, their emotions and their sensations. They conferred, as against the government, the right to be let alone - the most comprehensive of rights and the right most valued by civilized men."

    And if I no longer have the presumption of that right, can I at least have a coupon?

    Your friend,

    Kyrie (O'Connor)
    It's not how old you are, it's how you got here.
    It's been a long road and not all of it was paved.
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  4. #4  
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    “They’ve got big signs up that says ‘paid volunteer survey’ and if they want to participate they pull over there and they ask them questions and if they are willing to give them a mouth swab they give them $10 and if they are willing to give them a blood sample they give them $50. And if they don’t do anything they drive off,” Turrentine explained to The Daily
    Then why the roadblocks.

    Put up a sign and if drivers want to pull over, fine. But the roadblocks DO creep me out.
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  5. #5  
    Power CUer noonwitch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonnabend View Post
    Then why the roadblocks.

    Put up a sign and if drivers want to pull over, fine. But the roadblocks DO creep me out.

    Yeah, that's what I find creepy about it.



    Also, if they are paying people $50 for a blood sample for a study, are they going to get the average people giving blood? Or the kind of people who need $50 so badly that they are willing to give the police a sample of their blood?
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