On Oct 4th, 2012 I was stopped driving an old uhaul truck by Leland City Police. The tag was being covered by a hand truck that I had strapped to the rear bumper. After Officer Long took my paperwork and license, he said that my license was suspended. That part I have no problem with. He wrote me a ticket and that was over.
While Officer Long had me pulled over, Officer Spence and another Leland City Police Officer, two Brunswick County K9 Units, and a Brunswick County Sheriff arrived. Deputy Brian Carlisle with the K9 unit looked at me and said "Do you remember me?" The last time we met, he held me on the side of the road for hours searching the same truck. He had not found anything that day and I tried telling him they would get the same result this time.
They asked to search the truck. I said I would rather they not. They informed me they were going to search the truck with the dog. They put me and my friends in handcuffs and in the back of separate police cars. They moved the 24ft moving truck to Lowes food parking lot and began unloading it. The last time Deputy Carlisle searched the truck there were less things in the truck and they were able to rummage through without unloading it.
They told us we were all going to jail. They kept us in the rear of a police cars handcuffed until we all had to beg to use the bathroom. They broke multiple items and treated everything in the back of the truck like trash. While we were there a few men in nice shirts and neck ties came to look and then leave. The search turned up nothing in the back of the truck. They put everything back in the truck as quickly as they could. They even strapped the hand truck back on the bumper. They said they found a piece of a marijuana cigar in a soda can under the seat in the cab of the truck. They told us we were on their list now and this would happen again. Officer Long wrote me a ticket and they all left.
Everything in the back of the moving truck was stepped on, tossed about, and broken. The lady we were helping was crushed. She was mad at us in disbelief that the police would do such a thing.
It took 6 police almost 5 hours to write 2 tickets. This is the second time Brunswick County Sheriffs K9 Unit has searched and found nothing but trash. How much time and money was spent writing a ticket. Do you think that it was proper allocation of taxpayer funds?
The next day I straightened out my license.
I called and sent emails to anyone I thought might be able to help. I called the Chief of Police, City Manager and Mayor of Leland to complain. They all returned my phone call and urged me to make an appointment. I was worried to meet with the Police Chief but when the Mayor called I believed that she might truly care about corruption in her city.
I went to Leland Town Hall to meet with the Mayor, Town Manager and Police Chief on Oct 9th 2012. We sat down and went over my complaint. We watched the video from the stop in which I was complaining. The video had no clear view of the officers while in the back of the truck. They had no video from the beginning of the rear compartment search.
After our meeting I was introduced to the Internal Affairs Officer and I filed a formal complaint against Officer Long and Officer Spence. The IA officer kept correcting me on Officer Long’s and Spence’s correct title and rank. He seemed less than interested on what I had to say and only wrote down a portion of what I had said. After he had filled out the complaint papers we had it notarized and I was on my way. I went outside, got in my truck and left.
Before I made it to the end of the block three or four Leland City Police were behind me. The Chief, Officer Long, and the Internal Affairs Officer all included. They pulled me over. They had smiled and listened while I complained about Officer Long. All the while knowing he was around the block waiting for me.
They informed me that my license was still suspended and ask me to get out of the truck. I produced the paperwork from SCDMV to prove my license was valid. I refused to exit the truck. They held me for about 30 minutes trying to decide what to do. Luckily, this time they let me go.
I have since left a message for the Mayor with no response.
Do the Officials at Leland actually care about the concerns of citizens, or are they just seeking revenge on those who complain.
Free and Proud Carolina Citizen
"Give me liberty, or give me death" Patrick Henry 1775
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