Drug-Sniffing Dog Prowling BART Cars 

Drug-Sniffing Dog Prowling BART Cars 
Posted by FoM on December 14, 2001 at 09:40:53 PT
By John Koopman, Kelly St. John and Ryan Kim
Source: San Francisco Chronicle 
It might be a good idea to leave the doobies at home if you plan to ride BART anytime soon. Officer Millie is roaming BART trains sniffing for riders who might have thought the train was an easy way to transport narcotics. While Millie, a black labrador retriever, is supposed to find drug dealers and big stashes, she also knows when you've got a baggie or even a joint. "Here at BART we have a zero tolerance policy," said BART police Cmdr. Wade Gomes. "We want the bad guys to know we're out there, and we'll get you no matter how much you're carrying." 
The drug sniffing dog started work Wednesday night as part of a new drug enforcement program by BART and U.S. Customs Service. The first day's work resulted in four arrests. Three were minor citations, police said; one was a man carrying 13 baggies of pot. Officer Millie was out last night, too, and her efforts resulted in nine more citations being issued for possession of marijuana. Gomes said BART police had been told by many local police departments that the trains were used to transport drugs. So, he said, the BART police wanted to look for a way to stem that flow, which might become even more important after BART completes its new station at the San Francisco International Airport. BART police got together with U.S. Customs, he said, because the federal agency has a "passive narcotic canine program." Which is a bureaucratic way to say they use nice, friendly dogs to do the searches. Instead of the tough, sometimes ferocious German shepherds that are usually used by police, Customs uses smaller dogs, black Labrador retrievers and golden retrievers, for this kind of work. It works like this, Gomes said: two Customs agents and three BART officers board a train. Three of the group station themselves at either end of the car and two go with the dog. The canine walks along and sniffs around the passengers. When the dog smells drugs, it simply sits next to the suspect and looks at him or her. That's what police call ''an alert." It gives the officer reason to search the person. Most of the time, Gomes said, the officers first ask the person to simply hand over their drugs, and so far they have. Dale Gieringer, coordinator of the California chapter of NORML, the National Organization for Reform of Marijuana Laws which supports legalizing marijuana called a BART drug sweep a waste of time and money. "This is penny ante stuff. It sounds like a penny ante crime creation program by cops who don't have anything better to do," Gieringer said. "I thought this country had a war on terrorism. Are smugglers taking BART from Thailand to the Embarcadero?" Gieringer said people who use marijuana for medical purposes might also unfairly be caught and cited. "They should let people go if they just have a joint or two," Gieringer said. "That's causing no threat at all to the public." Sean Sloane, a 37-year-old San Francisco computer consultant, said the move further promoted an extreme police state. He also questioned spending resources for a problem he does not consider to be that serious. "It's intrusive, and they're wasting their time," said Sloane. "It will just be petty." But many others said the dogs made sense. Michele Battise, a Nordstrom saleswoman from Oakland, said there were plenty of shady characters riding BART who she suspected could be carrying drugs. "I'm for it as long as they don't target people," said Battise. "If this discourages people from transporting drugs, I'd encourage it." Note: 13 arrests on trains on first two nights. Source: San Francisco Chronicle (CA)Author: John Koopman, Kelly St. John, Ryan Kim, Chronicle Staff WritersPublished: Friday, December 14, 2001 Copyright: 2001 San Francisco Chronicle  Page A - 29 Contact: letters sfchronicle.comWebsite: Articles & Web Site:California NORML's Crazy Train To Seek Drugs At Senior Housing Protest Use of Drug Dogs at School
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Comment #26 posted by Rev Jonathan Adler on December 18, 2001 at 00:35:40 PT:
BART Dogs Sniffing for Pot?
There were the good old days. There was less paranoia then, but imagine traveling BART now, not knowing what to expect. This should reduce ridership alot. Peace from Paradise! I just stopped our Chief of Police and showed him our Prosecutor had signed off on my religious rights in court! He smiled and I got permission to make another appointment to discuss the future of religious use of cannabis.Boy it must be weird to be a legal pot user and take the BART nowadays! I used BART in 1996-1997 to transport MASS amounts of medical marijuana and I used to Label the box clearly with the CBC Amigo Brand Logo and carry it openly. I always was burning just before and after the train rides so I must have reeked! 
Hawaii Medical Marijuana Institute
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Comment #25 posted by john wayne on December 15, 2001 at 13:03:05 PT
BAVU: bay area vaporizer users
Hey there BAVU's!  You use a vaporizer for the health benefits. You ride BART as well. Vaporizer duff (the stuff that's left over after vaporizing vannabis) seems like it needs to be left on BART, perhaps ground under the heel a bit, like the cannabis users in the usa.Even if only 1% of the stoners riding BART were to bring vap. duff, stems, leaves, whatever JUST ONCE and leave them on BART, I'd imagine that doggy would be quietly retired.
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Comment #24 posted by Jose Melendez on December 15, 2001 at 10:57:12 PT:
Lemon Balm seeds - 49 cents!
Lemon balm (Melissa
This relative of the mint has the most wonderful lemon scent and flavor.
Lemon balm tea is very tasty and has soothing, relaxing effects. Fresh
chopped leaves are also used in salads and soups. Height: 1 foot (30cm).
Perennial. Recommended. Packet is 30 seeds: $0.49
more info at:
and from:
    Contains a group of chemicals called terpenes, which have calming properties. Also
  contains compounds, including tannins known as polyphenols that keep viruses from
  attaching to cells, preventing the spread of infection. Number 1 herb for treating herpes
  virus. Recommended for treatment of Graves diseases in Europe. Antihistamine,
  antibacterial, antiviral, sedative, soothes stomach, eases spasms, calms nerves and
  relieves pain.
Arrest Prohibition - Drug War is TREASON
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Comment #23 posted by Dan B on December 14, 2001 at 22:13:51 PT:
Dear Editor:This is in response to the Friday, December 14, 2001, article titled "Drug-Sniffing Dog Prowling BART Cars."The people of California should be aware that public transportation is not only a privilege, but a right. Equal treatment on public transportation was fought for and won on November 13, 1956, when the United States Supreme Court ruled against segregation of seating on public buses. Why is the right to public transportation relevant? Aside from the fact that thousands of perfectly innocent Bay Area travelers are subjected to unwarranted searches each time Millie walks down their aisles, the right to public transportation is relevant because California's Bay Area is home to hundreds, if not thousands, of medical patients who legally (under state law) use marijuana while under the supervision of their doctors to combat the effects of serious diseases, like AIDS and cancer. Thanks to marijuana, many of these people can live relatively normal lives, and in some cases they can even work outside the home. These people should not fear harassment each time they enter the Bay Area Rapid Transit system, yet under current enforcement strategies they do.In 1955-56, the result of segregation was a boycott of all public transportation by African-Americans in the South. The result was a law prohibiting such segregation. Perhaps residents of the Bay Area who can afford alternate transportation should consider such a boycott until BART once again recognizes the right of all Bay Area citizens to ride public transportation without fear of government-sponsored harassment.Dan B
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Comment #22 posted by E_Johnson on December 14, 2001 at 17:00:45 PT
Class action suit agains Wade Gomes for libel?
I challenge Wade Gomes to prove that I am a "bad guy". I am respected by people who are at the top of this society. I feel personally libeled by his remarks. I have carried marijuana on BART as a medical user and I have never dome anything to hurt alarm or endanger anyone on BART or otherwise. I am not by any strecth of the imagination a "bad guy".Why should we allow ourselves to be libeled and defamed in this manner, to be portrayed as bad people who do harm to others? I am really getting sick of this war of defamation and libel.They should have to prove these things in a court of law!
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Comment #21 posted by FoM on December 14, 2001 at 16:33:14 PT
Lemon Balm
I have 6 or so plants that I've had outside for around 5 years now. I thought it just made a good cup of herbal tea!
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Comment #20 posted by FoM on December 14, 2001 at 16:27:03 PT
Dogs don't like Lavendar essential oil
I use Lavendar essential oil because it is antiviral and antibacterial and is calming when inhaled and helps headaches too. In my using different oils the one that my dog hates is Lavendar. This is pure oil not the kind you buy at a store but at a health food store. When my dog was a pup and he would try to chew on the carpet I would dab a little on the area he wanted to chew and he would wrinkle up his nose and not go near that spot for a few hours. Dogs and bugs don't seem to like it and it is natural and I like that.
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Comment #19 posted by Dark Star on December 14, 2001 at 16:21:41 PT
Caryophyllene oxide
It also appears in oxidized hops. It is found in trace amounts in Melissa officinalis (lemon balm). It is also an additive in tobacco.See:
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Comment #18 posted by Dark Star on December 14, 2001 at 16:13:32 PT
Now We've Done It
I regret that as a result of my post, there may be a large number of unemployed drug-sniffing dogs. May their retirement to "pet-only" status be long and healthy.
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Comment #17 posted by JR Bob Dobbs on December 14, 2001 at 16:12:15 PT
  What other ways are there to get this substance without being in possession of contraband? Does it occur in other plants in sufficient quantity to throw off the dogs? Or can it be ordered from a chemical supply house without alerting suspicion? And conversely, is there a way to remove it from the herb, for a stash that can't be smelled?
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Comment #16 posted by Jose Melendez on December 14, 2001 at 15:46:21 PT:
nefarious intent?
The preceding post was offered with the intent of exposing the drug war as fraud, knowingly perpetuated on citizens of the world by those who have a vested interest in keeping marijuana illegal despite its safety record of all of recorded human history WITHOUT A SINGLE OVERDOSE FATALITY.
...apologies to those who have fatally overdosed on marriage, next time be nice to your partner...
Arrest Prohibition - Drug War is FRAUD
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Comment #15 posted by Jose Melendez on December 14, 2001 at 15:39:17 PT:
Thanks SO much for posting this info, lets flood them with this stuff:
Synonyms: (— )-Epoxy-caryophyllene; (1R,4R,6R,10S)-9-Methylene-4,12,12-trimethyl-5-oxa-tricyclo[,6]dodecane
Molecular Formula: C15H24O
Molecular Weight: 220.35
CAS: 1139-30-6
MDL Number: MFCD00134216 
Purity Grade: puriss., ³ 99.0 % (GC, sum of enantiomers)Comments:  a20546 (c= 2 in CHCl3) -831 mp 62— 63 C  a20D (c= 2 in CHCl3) -711 ELINCS/EINECS Number: 2145197
BRN: 148213Hazard Symbol: Irritant
Storage Temp: 4C
R&S: R: 36/38 S: 26-36 F: 1-10
Literature References: Carefully purified sesquiterpene; it was transformed in oxygenation reactions: H. Hikino et al., Chem. Pharm. Bull. 17, 1390 (1969); V. Srinivasan, E.W. Warnhoff, Can. J. Chem. 54, 1372 (1976); Stereoselective rearrangement to an allyl alcohol: H.M.R. Hoffmann, U. Vogt, Synlett 581 (1990); C.E. Sowa et al., Tetrahedron 49, 4183 (1993); Transformation to an amine: H.M.R. Hoffmann, U. Eggert, Synlett 337 (1991)
Compliance: RTECS RP5530000 • Flpt. >110C
caryophyllene oxide
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Comment #14 posted by Dark Star on December 14, 2001 at 14:24:01 PT
The Real Dope
The following is offered for educational purposes with no nefarious intent:Dogs do not smell THC. They react to a chemical component in marijuana called caryophyllene oxide. It is available from www.sigma-aldrich.comReference:Stahl, E. and R. Kunde. 1973. De Letsubstanzen der Haschish-Suchhunde. [Leading substances for hashish narcotic dogs.] Kriminalistik 9: 385-388.Enquiring minds want to know!
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Comment #13 posted by TroutMask on December 14, 2001 at 13:04:42 PT
...I predict that people are going to dump their bong water on the seats to mess with the dogs and pigs.hehehe. that's funny. I expect resin from a pipe would work too, or just seeds.-TM
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Comment #12 posted by i420 on December 14, 2001 at 12:52:08 PT
What rights????
This is clearly unreasonable search and seizure....  burn the constitution !!!!  
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Comment #11 posted by Lehder on December 14, 2001 at 12:27:45 PT
I have seen in the movies, but do not know independently, that fresh hot pepper on the ground throws off a dog's scent rather badly. At least it worked for Papillion - Steve McQueen - running in chains. Cocaine and blood mixture might be impractical these days. The Danes' record throughout WWII is very much to be admired. When the Nazis ordered under various ugly threats that all the Jews of Copenhagen be turned out into the street, all the citizens of the city presented themselves. The struggles were painful and seemed endless, but in Denmark far fewer Jews were murdered than those of other overrun countries. Three cheers for Denmark!
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Comment #10 posted by Lehder on December 14, 2001 at 12:15:44 PT
Watch your step
After the boycott, how about some "Millie Magnets" that people could slap on outside the train doors if they spot her on the train? That would warn people to just wait for the next train at the cost of a couple minutes time.Good idea. Or just make the peace sign thru windows to passengers about to board. I think that perfume would not fool the dogs, but I predict that some socially irresponsible people will stoop low enough to scatter stems on the floor. This dog plan is utterly stupid and will have to be given up. So will the whole damn war. God, I'm feeling ugly about all this today. But it can test one's patience to see such policies implemented while Europe accelerates legalization. Out with the stupid, in with the new!I predict that irresponsible people are going to drop dog shit on the train floors. 
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Comment #9 posted by SpaceCat on December 14, 2001 at 12:00:18 PT
BART, Security, Nordstrom's
I was just on BART carrying the dreaded doobage a week before, went from SF to Berkely (where the headshops alternate with the "This is a Drug-Free Zone" signs)! Not really much of a risk even now, given that there is one Millie and hundreds of BART trains daily.13 citations in two days/1 dog X 100's of trains=one hell of a lot of people casually carrying the herb!After the boycott, how about some "Millie Magnets" that people could slap on outside the train doors if they spot her on the train? That would warn people to just wait for the next train at the cost of a couple minutes time.Go to the airport if you want increased security. Not that it is effective against terrorists, but it's good for scaring the populace. After walking past the tiny little guarder and her machine gun, I was courteously pulled out of line at the gate and had bags searched, metal detector run over me, and frisked from the knees down (by a very nice and friendly non-fed security guard). He must've thought the 1/2oz of Kind in my pants pocket was some strange cologne, or else he just gave me a pass. I was catching whiffs of it despite double-bagging and he had his nose about an inch from my pocket during the frisk!The best part was the quote from the Nordstrom lady, as I would fit the description, being Mr. unshaven, rolled-up baggy jeans and T-shirt: "shady characters riding BART who she suspected could be carrying drugs" and she would have been right, too!Of course, the irony is since I work in IT I probably make 5 times her salary and my wife spent more at Nordstrom's in the 4 days we were there than that lady makes in a week! Who's more valuable to the economy and the new US order, her or Mr.(I wish I was slim) Shady?!
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Comment #8 posted by Jose Melendez on December 14, 2001 at 12:00:04 PT:
screw the drug war
...I predict that people are going to dump their bong water on the seats to mess with the dogs and pigs. 
YES! Also they can buy cannabis perfume and incense from Germany, and fog the train with weed scent. How much does a false arrest lawsuit cost to defend against? 
If you try this, make sure you are not carrying, and also GET VIDEO!
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Comment #7 posted by Lehder on December 14, 2001 at 11:58:35 PT
boycotts and 'buy nothing day'
I have several times extolled the virtues of thrift, including its effectives as a political statement. So I was very pleased to read this report of "buy nothing day:" this be the bleakest Christmas of all for retailers, and the happiest and warmest for the people. Support Family Values, boycott The Machine.A boycott of BART would certainly be much to my liking, too, but I think it unlikely to work. Many people on BART cannot afford cars, and it's perfectly consistent with the drug war to persecute the poor. Many other people who ride public transportation do so out of a committment to social responsibility; none of these people should be hassled. Of course if you are raped or robbed on BART, that's okay - it can be blamed on drug addicts.But these repressive policies will continue. The drug warriors' would see our country and our culture, such as they are, destroyed rather than give up their bigotries and foolishness. ---------Now here is some welcome acrimony and discord, backlash to Bush totalitarianism, that will make the news:''We've got a dictatorial president and a Justice Department that does not want Congress involved. ... Your guy's acting like he's king.''The searing tone continued for more than four hours from Republicans and Democrats, liberals and conservatives. All objected to the order Bush signed Wednesday and made public yesterday. It claimed executive privilege in refusing to
hand over prosecutors' memos in criminal cases, including an investigation of campaign-finance abuses, saying doing so ''would be contrary to the national interest.'' will certainly make the mainstream news. Here's to hoping it grows into something really ugly that dwarfs Watergate and leads to a discussion of the drug war too, an impeachment, some truth and some prosecutions to entertain the people and bring a little justice.-----------With respect to my letters to politicians a few minths ago:
I received only one reply to my letter asking specific questions and demanding specific answers about the drug war. It was a form letter from Senator George Voinovich that whimpered about his fear of anthrax, how he was unable to answer much mail because of the disruption. I'm not surprised he could find no time to read my letter since he, like so many, probably could not find the opportunity to read the PATRIOT Act, either, befroe voting for it. What a bunch of slobs and cowards, bought by pharmaceutical companies, afraid to be called names like "soft on drugs," "soft on terror." 
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Comment #6 posted by observer on December 14, 2001 at 11:58:12 PT
re: Can the dog detect Jews?
Sort of ... but once you know the trick and organize, such sensitive sensors may be jammed.When it became evident that large numbers of Danish Jews were escaping to Sweden by boats, the Germans used police dogs to sniff out human cargo aboard the ships. . . . To overcome this Danish scientist in Malmo concocted a powder made up of dried human blood and cocaine, which dusted on the decks of the ships, completely deadened the dogs' sense of smell. In addition, small amounts of the powder were placed in carefully folded handkerchiefs, which were distributed to the key Danish Seamen. When the Germans came aboard the ships with their dogs, the seamen pretending to blow their noses with their handkerchiefs, would let the powder fall to he decks in the vicinity of the dogs. The Germans never found out why their highly trained police dogs were completely ineffective. HOLCAUST BYSTANDERS - DENMARK 
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Comment #5 posted by Sam Adams on December 14, 2001 at 11:15:15 PT
bad story
Too bad the media continues to joke about the MJ issue (note the first line about "doobies") when black labs and retrievers are the same dogs that get used for explosives dectection. Of course, none of the dogs being used would even bat an eye if he walked by someone with 5 sticks of dynamite, because they've only been trained for drugs.We're a very advanced society, but we're blinded by our own arrogance. We're no safer now than pre-9/11. I've been out to concerts, shopping malls, and riding the train and I haven't seen one indication of any more security or police anywhere. What's it going to take for our government to think pro-actively? I really had hoped things would change. The business community had tasked the government with public safety, leaving business to grow the economic engine that drives the US. The govt totally dropped the ball, and it was the business world that took it in the neck. Now, it appears we've gone to back to blind, naive, trust.I hope that we'll avoid the kind of ongoing problems seen in England and Israel, but I'm watching my own back because law enforcement isn't going to do a damn thing to protect us.
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Comment #4 posted by E_Johnson on December 14, 2001 at 10:44:27 PT
How much money would they lose...
if every pot snoker in the Bay Area, and the people who care about them, boycotted BART for a week or two?
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Comment #3 posted by E_Johnson on December 14, 2001 at 10:42:13 PT
It's time for strikes and boycotts
Let's start practicing a little zero tolerance on them for change.We contribute to this economy. Maybe we haven't been making that point well enough yet. 
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Comment #2 posted by Lehder on December 14, 2001 at 09:52:16 PT
Can the dog detect Jews?
I hope so for all our sakes. And terrorsts - people who disagree with Ashcroft and Bush about bombing the world -- why should people like these be on public transportation anyway?This policy will induce people on drugs to drive. People who have only smoked dope but are carrying nothing will also be singled out? Should they be strip searched or should they be shot! A policy like this serves its real purpose very well: the further destabilization and polarization of society to make life as stupid as possible. I predict that people are going to dump their bong water on the seats to mess with the dogs and pigs. better just stand while riding BART. Only in the US.
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Comment #1 posted by aocp on December 14, 2001 at 09:47:02 PT
"Here at BART we have a zero tolerance policy," said BART police Cmdr. Wade Gomes. "We want the bad guys to know we're out there, and we'll get you no matter how much you're carrying."And the black market has an endless supply competing for insatiable demand policy. Oops. Oh, and the bad guys want y'all to know that for every head that you chop off, there are always at least two ready and willing to take their place. I guess there's nothing like trying your best to keep on keepin' on with one of the worst failures in all human history, but there's always the good fight to be fought, heya?
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