First Amendment Hessians MC Targeted and Harassed by Chino PD

Published on April 9th, 2016 | by David "Double D" Devereaux

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Hessians MC Targeted and Harassed by Chino PD

The Motorcycle Profiling Project recently received a copy of two formal complaints sent to the Chino Police Department relating to a blatant instance of motorcycle profiling and discrimination involving a member and prospective member of the Hessians Motorcycle Club.

Mr. Bill G and a Mr. Bill E were followed and then stopped on a bogus pretext. Officers proceeded to unconstitutionally search both individuals and their property without consent or probable cause. The stop also extended far beyond accepted 4th Amendment stop duration standards. This stop typifies the experience of thousands of motorcyclists on a regular basis. The pattern of motorcycle profiling in the state of California is irrefutable and the epidemic requires legislative relief.

 

THE INITIAL STOP

 

On the evening of March 12, 2016 Bill G and Bill E were leaving a bike shop in Chino when they noticed they were obviously being followed by numerous Chino Police vehicles as they came to a stop at a light. Mr. E describes in a formal complaint to the Chino PD:

 

“On the evening of 3/12/2016, [we] had just left “The Bike Shop” in the City of Chino. We went there to set up an appointment for Mr G’s bike to be worked on…

 

As we left The Bike Shop…we witnessed several Chino PD vehicles at 5th Avenue to our right. As we passed 6th Avenue, I witnessed more Chino PD vehicles to the left. They immediately pulled out behind us. We were obviously aware of their presence. There should not have been an issue. We were following the posted speed limit and all traffic laws.

 

As we approached Central Avenue, I could see the police cars change lanes in my mirrors. The light was already red  as we STOPPED and put BOTH feet down. We looked left, looked right  and left again. We proceeded to make a right turn onto Central Ave. To our surprise the Chino  PD vehicle’s red lights came on. Within seconds the sirens followed as we were pulling over to the nearest safe spot.

 

I was told to keep my hands on the handlebars. Officer Bemowski told me to remove my helmet, set it down and remain with my hand on my bars. He then stated he had stopped me (us) for “running a red light.” (not something anyone would do knowing that police are behind them)

 

 

After being detained, both individuals had their persons searched without consent.  Bill E continues:

 

As he proceeded to remove Mr. G from his motorcycle, Officer Bemowski turned Mr. G around and searched him, removing all of his belongings. As I watched this I could see several Chino police officers standing behind me. After Bemowski was finished with Mr. G he sat him on the curb and approached me.

 

Bemowski removed me from my bike, turned me around, and asked, “Do you have any weapons?”

 

I replied, “No I do not.”

 

Not once was I asked for my drivers license, registration, or insurance.  Instead  Bemowski helped himself to my belongings without my consent, handing them over to another officer. My wallet was riffled through. After everything was emptied out of my many pockets, (note- still nothing illegal nor any weapons) I was sat down on the curb.

 

 

OFFICER’S WORDS PROVE THIS WAS MOTORCYCLE PROFILING

 

Clearly the officers were not motivated by a red light violation. Bill E says a female officer “proceeded to have me pull up my shirt front and back and ask questions about my tattoos. As she was doing this, an unmarked gang task force unit arrived.

 

The Officer exited his unit and stated, “I saw these two earlier.” As he walked around me he stated, “Ohhh. No, these are not VAGOS. I wish they were.” As another officer proceeded to ask me, “ What’s with all the VAGOS lately anyhow?” I responded, “How should I  know?”

 

Bill G confirms the obvious anti-motorcycle club prejudice.

 

 

“As the search continued (all for an alleged red light citation) his hand brushed against my silver pin on my vest. His then offending statement, “Oh sorry, I touched your 1% ‘er Diamond.” But in reality it was NOT a 1% ‘er diamond. He clearly was exhibiting his prejudice towards my looks  or “class of persons.”  This is called profiling, and it is unconstitutional.”

 

 

This describes a typical motorcycle profiling stop. Unfortunately, under normal 4th Amendment analysis using a traffic infraction as a pretext to conduct an investigatory stop is perfectly legal. This is exactly why a legislative solution is required. The legislature can provide more protection than the limited protections offered by the 4th Amendment.
This stop also typifies most motorcycle profiling stops because the issue goes beyond a mere pretext. Most profiling stops in the status quo also violate other 4th Amendments guarantees.

 

ILLEGAL SEARCH VIOLATION

 

Absent probable cause or consent, a search of an individual’s vehicle is considered unreasonable under  the 4th Amendment. Obviously there was no probable cause for a search in this instance. After the questionable personal searches found nothing illegal (no doubt justified through officer safety) their was no justification for vehicle searches. But that’s exactly what happened.  Mr. E continues:

 

“I then Watched Bemowski rifle through Mr. G’s bike without consent, including his bags.”

 
Bill G’s complaint confirms that the denial of consent was ignored by all officers involved.

“I CLEARLY stated that, loud enough that ALL officers on the scene could hear me, “I do NOT consent to ANY search of my person OR property.”

 

This was a violation of my 4th Amendment rights to the United States Constitution. To only be ignored, as though I’ve been judged as some kind of criminal or someone to be taken advantage of, is unacceptable and must be reprimanded.

 
After Bill G’s bike was searched, attention shifted to Mr. E’s motorcycle. Bill E states:

 

“Officer Bemowski now turned his attention to my bike. He asked, “May I search your bike?” I responded, “For what reason?”  He stated, “For my own safety.”

I told him he had no right to search it. As he began removing bag after bag he opened each one and dumped the contents, including tool pouches and overnight belongings, onto the street. With one last compartment left he asked, “Where is your registration and insurance?”

 

I replied, “It’s in the only compartment left you have not removed my belongings from.”

 
The officer then asked whether Mr. E had been drinking or doing drugs. Obviously not.
At this point the search goes from unreasonable to completely abusive when a Chino PD officer rips Mr. E’s seat from the bike destroying the holding tab. The complaint continues:

 

After successfully finding my current registration and insurance card, he then asked me, “Whats under the seat?”

 

I responded “my battery.”  He asked, “How do you remove the seat?”

 

I responded, “You have to remove the bag located on the rear of the seat in order to access the  bolt that holds it down.”

 

To my surprise Officer Bemowski had pulled up my seat without removing this bolt and had it spun sideways, obviously not the correct way to remove it…

 

After all this abuse, not a single illegal thing was found. I was handed a citation, # 276003, for allegedly running a red light and told I may pick up all my belongings and put them all back in my compartments.

 

I started doing so when I asked Officer Bemoski, “How should I re-install my seat after you forcefully pulled it up and bent the holding tab?”

 

He replied, “I guess that’s why you have all those tools laying on the ground.”

 

UNREASONABLE STOP DURATION VIOLATION

 

Independent of of no cause or consent for vehicle searches, this incident also violates the common 4th Amendment principle of reasonable stop duration. Traffic stops are only allowed to last as long as it  would take a reasonable officer to issue a citation under the particular circumstances. Although there is no hard and fast rule, 20 minutes was identified in a recent Supreme Court case as reasonable. Bill E says that the stop “lasted well over an hour.”
Moreover, the officer had already searched Mr. E’s bags BEFORE he asked for identification. The officer was intentionally extending the duration of the stop with no probable cause or reasonable suspicion justifying his extensive search instead of immediately asking for identification and issuing a violation.

 

CONCLUSIONS

 

In conclusion, Mr. G and Mr. E were targeted, followed, stopped, and harassed based on their appearance, as opposed to their behavior. This stop typifies the practice of using a minor traffic infraction as a pretext for an investigatory stop. And like most profiling stops, this stop also violated well established 4th Amendment protections. As the pattern of evidence continues to mount, legislative action provides the best opportunity to end the practice of motorcycle profiling currently hiding under the cover of pretext in California and most of America.

 

 

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About the Author

David

is the Spokesperson for the Washington State Council of Clubs, Founder of the Motorcycle Profiling Project, and works with motorcyclists at the national level. Contact: Send Email,



DISCLAIMER: Although comments are encouraged and appreciated, not all comments will be posted by Motorcycle Profiling Project LLC. The Motorcycle Profiling Project LLC appreciates oppositional viewpoints but will not post any comments that do not contribute to a respectful and meaningful discussion or are blatantly discriminatory or otherwise offensive. Resubmissions will be considered at the commenter's request.


11 Responses to Hessians MC Targeted and Harassed by Chino PD

  1. Avatar Carey Hates California says:

    I hate California!

    • Avatar Troy says:

      Please don’t hate the people there because they are victims also. And please don’t hate the land because it is beautiful there, and its not the land’s fault that we humans are such bad stewards. But I agree with hating the state, because that is the most over reaching, incarcerating, crooked body of governance in this country.

  2. Avatar Anonymous says:

    What the hell is wrong with this picture. Children are being abducted left and right, and all they have to do is harass motorcycle riders. They need to save their energy for a time when there is a fight or someone is driving drunk. Plenty of those out there too, driving there cars under the influence. Maybe Chino has way more cops than it needs.

  3. Avatar Anonymous says:

    Arizona’s getting the same way, though one they know traffic stops are 30 minutes after the cops know and surprisingly follow, they either need to let the person go or give them a ticket or do an arrest. and Also THERE”S NO WAY THE DID ALL THAT WITH ONLY COP AND IT TOOK ONLY 20Minutes!!! Tell From experience it took longer!! But, WTF!! cops need to stop profiling everybody!! especially if you’re on a bike!! Some laws need to change and the Cops better start following do things correctly and stop thinking just because They HAVE A BADGE THEYdo WHATEVER THEY WANT!! BULLSHIT!!, or there’s a lot more problems

  4. Avatar Rod (Zombro) Petticrew says:

    I ride in Arkansas, not as bad as California, but don’t expect to catch a break here if you ride!! I support the “no profiling movement” some of the best people I have ever known were bikers!!! At least if you are a Brother/Sister and a stand up person they have your back!! Been helped numerous times in various states by fellow bikers that didn’t know me from Adam!! Long live the Brotherhood of Bikers!!! It doesn’t matter if you are a club rider or independent rider, we are all Brothers of the Wind!!!

  5. Avatar Kaos king says:

    Another day in the life of a 1%ER , constantly harassed by law enforcement. So much real crime out there to be dealt with but let’s fukk with people who ride motorcycles.

  6. Avatar Poet says:

    This shit is happening all over Nirth America, not just in the States.
    If that happened to me up here? I’d be filing a lawsuit PDQ

  7. Avatar Troy says:

    While I certainly support the legislation that you mention needing to become law, I also feel that legislation alone is not sufficient enough to tame these rogue cops across this country, and growing in numbers daily. These cops are lower then the rapists and murders that we hired them to protect us from. They demand respect from the public while claiming roots intertwined with integrity. That is straight lies, because if they held to their self proclaimed integral bonds, then they would not be beating, killing, and violating the civil rights of almost every citizen they come into contact with. I have seen people whom have been pulled over and not even aware of their civil rights that where being infringed upon. In truth society has become ignorant about their civil rights and Constitutional protections that is not taught any more in public schools. ( Hillsdale College offers free online classes about the Constitution and many other things. It is one of the best respected colleges in the country) So the fix to this, although severely disabling to the law enforcement, is not permitting these cops to enforce traffic codes or laws, and only allowing civillian volunteers to issue traffic citations. This would force law enforcement into having to actually fight crime and go after bad people, instead of taking to the hunt of civilians like a predator hunting the pray. And the bad thing about all of this is the police that we are supposed to be able to trust and feel safe around, are the exact people (cops) that have created the entire problem by….yes that’s correct, not holding their personal values to the traditional roots of integrity as society expects them to. Hell some of their heroic icons and mentors like Wild Bill Hitchcock and Wyatt Earp was not all that far from being criminals themselves and today would be considered as insane and a danger to society. Just saying sometimes the book needs to be opened further than the cover to see the whole story.
    The American American, Fighting to Restore Our Free Nation.

  8. Avatar Hoodwoods says:

    I am so glad the MPP is around to finally show the abuse Patch Holders and even everyday motorcycle enthusiasts have been dealing with daily for over half a century.. .we should overwhelmingly FLOOD Chino with bikes and bring the coty to a stand still…. Just my humble opinion but my opinions are also know to most as facts

  9. Avatar Maryanne says:

    This is a bunch of Shit.. Chino PD needs to get a life!! Go after the people that are really doing crimes!! Stop picking on the MC”s!! I bet they do a lot more for the community than the PD could ever do !!

  10. Avatar Joe Sixpak says:

    I was living in the L.A. area from 1967 til I left in ’70. When on my m/c the harrassment sometimes was a continuous thing. The LEO’s practically asked me to do stuff so they could bust me. Got to where I knew the insides of a lot of jails in LA county. So, the cops of today are really not that much different than 45 years ago. They know they have the advantage and like to pursue it. A lot of cops are o.k. people, but a lot of them are just bullies and think they are badasses.

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