Cops Caught Planting Drugs on Suspect. Again.

An undercover police officer in Schenectady County, New York has been caught on video planting crack cocaine in a store in order to arrest the store owner after an informant said there were drugs being sold there. Here’s a local news report that contains the video:


The man on tape is now apparently “on the run” and hasn’t been found. This is hardly unusual. When the Atlanta PD drug squad killed Kathryn Johnston after coercing an informant to sign an affidavit saying he had bought drugs at her house, two officers testified that this was routine, that the officers all carried drugs in their police cars to plant on people.

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  • Jeez. Aside from the setup, how square are the cops? I mean, who buys crack from a head shop? It would be like going to Tony Montana for hillbilly heroin. Totally different market.

  • D. C. Sessions

    Good thing those cops have a “professional courtesy” thing going with other agencies (and especially prosecutors), or there could be no end of drama when one of those cars inadvertently turns out to be be carrying — and the wrong people do the “finding.”

  • Trebuchet

    The video makes it pretty clear that the guy planting the dope was NOT a police officer but an informant — probably a guy facing charges himself who made a deal to get his charges reduced or dropped. That does not excuse the cops, of course — they probably gave him the crack in the first place, but the headline and first sentence of the post are misleading.

  • Seems like it would be dangerous for a business to do something illegal when it knows it has cameras running.

  • jaybee

    Two things:

    1) Why in hell does the video report, which is sympathetic to the smoke shop owner, display a mug shot type picture of the shop owner with the bold words “CAUGHT on TAPE?” overlaying it? It gives the impression that the owner is the guilty party.

    2) Ed, you say an undercover police officer was caught planting the crack. The video says a couple of times that the guy planting the drugs is an informant, not a police officer. It doesn’t lessen the jeopardy Andrews faced, but it is still factually incorrect as you’ve written it.

  • Abby Normal

    This is what we get for having a socialized police force. Free market police would have eliminated corruption long ago.

  • Yeah, Ed, that’s not the cops, that’s just a patsy doing so at the cops insistence, with threats if the informant failed to go throughw ith it. It’s not like the COPS did it: they’re the good guys!

    *Eyeroll* The hell’s wrong with you people?

  • jaybee

    #7, I’m sure your comment is aimed at me.

    Do you always misrepresent what other people have said and put words into their mouths to feed your need to condescend?

    The video says a couple of times that the guy planting the drugs is an informant, not a police officer. It doesn’t lessen the jeopardy Andrews faced, but it is still factually incorrect as you’ve written it.

    Does this in any way imply that the police are exonerated or that it lessens the importance of this crime?

    You should see an opthamologist about your eye rolling; it might be the signature of a more serious neurological problem.

  • Abby Normal

    Yea Rutee, how could you ever think that pointing out the cops didn’t plant the drugs might imply the cops weren’t responsible for planting the drugs. Mentioning they used a proxy to accomplish their goal just means… Um. Well I’m not sure why it’s relevant. But I’m sure it’s very important.

  • Nihilismus

    In my state, it is common practice for police to check to make sure the informant does not have drugs on him before sending him in. This is specifically done to rebut defense arguments that the informant used his own drugs.

    I’m not sure what the practice was in Schenectady County, New York. If the cops don’t check at all, that’s not very smart from a legal standpoint, and it makes me wonder whether they are secretly okay with the possibility that the informant might plant drugs. If they did check and failed to discover the drugs, they are incompetent, and if they argue (in future cases) that they checked an informant, defense attorneys will be able to point to this case. The worse situation for the cops is if they actually intended for the informant to plant the drugs, or knew that he would, and if they had starting writing their police reports to include a “search” of the informant. I would very much like to see the reports they turned in before the videos were released.

  • Thumper; immorally inferior Atheist mate

    … Crack? From a headshop (or “smokeshop”, whatever)? Are the cops unaware that these shops sell weed “paraphenalia”?