In the city of Stockton a program of confiscating the cars of those arrested for the solicitation of prostitution and buying drugs began as a means of detering the little man. The program looked so appealing to other municipalities that the cities of Los Angeles, San Diego, Sacramento, San Bernardino, Riverside, Inglewood and Ontario, among others began running similar programs. This program was running at the same time as the one written about illegal street racers cars being confiscated and crushed.
The leaders involved in making the decision to take the cars of the user and solicitor was that to do the same to the dealer or hooker (whoÂ are more portrayed as just standing there) was deemed would be ineffective. If you deprive the user of his means to come into those places where street-corner drugs and a lady of the night are readily available then that user will be less likely to return. The ordinance to confiscate these cars is reported to have netted thousands of vehicles.
I presume it would get quite expensive taking a cab over to Stockton to pick-up some rock. AndÂ it also seems unlikely very many hookers would be too eager to hop on the handlebars of your 12-speed to find a suitable location to stash your cash. So as a deterent it might in fact be an effective one. So always be leary if your neighbor asks to borrow your car. But where does car consfiscating end and has it gone to far?
Well after travelling through the circuit courts of appeals the legal case against such vehicle confiscations was put to the California Supreme Court.
“In its 4-3 decision, the court ruled that only the state can mete out punishment for drug and prostitution offenses, and that without authorization from the Legislature, cities can’t pass seizure ordinances that are harsher than state and federal laws. Even drivers suspected of buying a small amount of marijuana â€” a low-level crime punishable by a $100 fine â€” faced seizures under many ordinances.” – LA Times
So now the ordinances that were tools for the cities involved to move drug dealers and prostitutes out of the neighborhoods where families live and back into the cities where they belong(?) is no more. You can now roll into Stockton to have your crack and eat it too without the fear of losing your means to roll. That is until (or if) the state Congressmen of those cities rise up and push for similar legislations on the state level. However, that does not remove the confiscation and crush policy against street racers. They will have to enact their own lawsuits within the state court of appeals to challenge that program.
What do you think about the policy of confiscating the cars of those arrested for buying drugs or solisciting themselves some sexual deviance? Would it deter you (normally law abiding citizens,Â I know) from persuing your own illegal good time?
As an extra here I wanted to share the following photo as an example of what happens when the law fails the people and the people get creative. Maybe you will start seeing more signs like these along the streets of Stockton, Oakland and the like.
…that spells Instant Classic!