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From the Dark Tower: Unbridled Civil Asset Forfeiture


The Black Lives Matter movement reinforces that race dominates all aspects of the judicial system. Police officers are significantly more likely to stop African Americans than Whites. Even when a stop or arrest is unwarranted, law enforcement agencies can still profit from the property seized under the guise of forfeiture statutes. Various state and federal civil asset forfeiture statutes legitimize law enforcement seizing cash, homes, cars, and office equipment—all with nominal due process protections. Despite evidence of discriminatory police practices, the U.S. Supreme Court deems these forfeiture practices constitutional.

This article seeks to reignite the conversation about discriminatory policing and how racially biased policing results in law enforcement disproportionately seizing African Americans’ property suspected of being related to illegal activity. But, it also attempts to situate issues of protest movements as a vehicle to move the Supreme Court to change discriminatory standards under forfeiture statutes.

“We shall not always plant while others reap The golden increment of bursting fruit . . . .”