Open Tech

With $5.1B in New Toys, SWAT Deployments Rise 1,400% in 20 Years

With $5.1B in New Toys, SWAT Deployments Rise 1,400% in 20 Years
It almost makes sense on the surface: Police departments across the country receive the military's excess equipment, everything from fax machines to riot shields to "various types of land vehicles." While in effect since 1990, things really skyrocketed after 9/11 and then the de-escalation of involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan. The data regarding these acquisitions and the local departments' ability to use them are starting to flood out, and it's just as scary as the images of police militarization that have made Ferguson, Missouri, the center of this debate.
origin Author: 
Brandon Perkins
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PDF Pffft: Outdated Database of Court Records Begins Actively Removing Recent Cases

PDF Pffft: Outdated Database of Court Records Begins Actively Removing Recent Cases
PACER is a terrific acronym, but that's about all the Public Access to Court Electronic Records gets right. By almost all accounts, the system to search and download records constitutionally guaranteed to be made public is outdated, clumsy and loaded with bugs — and incredibly expensive for the average bank account. Now, the administrators at the courts of this country are actively removing cases from this antiquated, constitutionally-mandated access to public records.
origin Author: 
Brandon Perkins
origin Blog: 

Snowden Documents Reveal NSA's 'Own Secret Google'

Snowden Documents Reveal NSA's 'Own Secret Google'
The National Security Agency has for years been giving hundreds of billions of telecommunications records about foreigners and U.S. citizens to dozens of government bureaus, the Intercept reported on Monday.
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Death by Law Enforcement: What the Data Tells Us – and What it Doesn't

Death by Law Enforcement: What the Data Tells Us – and What it Doesn't
In Missouri, where Mike Brown lived and died, black people are killed by law enforcement twice as frequently as white people. Nationwide, the rate at which black people are killed by law enforcement is 3 times higher than that of white people.
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