“Police grab drugs in ‘traffic stop.'”
You hear and read these headlines all the time. I almost always chuckle when I see these stories. Why? Because the traffic stop, such as it is, usually is something of a ruse. The police pull motorists over expecting to find contraband hidden away.
Texas Department of Public Safety troopers have gotten really good at this.
The Interstate 40 corridor across the Texas Panhandle usually is among the most lucrative for DPS traffic troopers of any district within the state police network.
How do these troopers do it? As I understand it, they “profile” motorists as they blaze their way along I-40. If the motorist or a passenger looks suspicious when they pass a DPS trooper, the officer will give chase. Then they just might find something in the trunk of the car, or stuffed under the seats, or duct-taped to the undercarriage a “controlled substance” of some sort.
The War on Drugs, which has produced mixed results — and that’s the best thing I can say about it — has made law enforcement officers quite proficient at intercepting drugs on our major highway corridors.
Have these “traffic stops” done anything to curb the manufacture, sale, distribution and use/abuse of these drugs? Not one bit.
However, I continue to marvel at how good the police have gotten at this endeavor.
To be sure — as any cop on the beat will tell you — none of these “traffic stops” ever can be called “routine.”