Please note: I couldn’t quite find a category for this item, but I feel it is very relevant to EVERYONE’S privacy, but especially the LGBT community due to the abuse potential by law enforcement. “Rogue” cops and prosecutors could use such access to specifically target people on HIV meds, hormone treatments, etc. or just go fishing for dirt because they don’t like gay people, and want to punish them under “legal cover”
Sheriffs in North Carolina want access to state computer records identifying anyone with prescriptions for powerful painkillers and other controlled substances.
The state sheriff's association pushed the idea Tuesday, saying the move would help them make drug arrests and curb a growing problem of prescription drug abuse. But patient advocates say opening up people's medicine cabinets to law enforcement would deal a devastating blow to privacy rights.
Allowing sheriffs' offices and other law enforcement officials to use the state's computerized list would vastly widen the circle of people with access to information on prescriptions written for millions of people. As it stands now, doctors and pharmacists are the main users.
Sheriffs made their pitch Tuesday to a legislative health care committee looking for ways to confront prescription drug abuse. Local sheriffs said that more people in their counties die of accidental overdoses than from homicides. For years, sheriffs have been trying to convince legislators that the state's prescription records should be open to them.
"We can better go after those who are abusing the system," said Lee County Sheriff Tracy L. Carter.
Hey Sheriff Carter? Here's a thought. If you suspect that a person is abusing prescription drugs, or may be involved in an organized effort to obtain them for re-sale, try this little know tool: Appear before a judge or magistrate and present evidence that you have "probable cause" to believe a crime is being committed. If the judge finds your evidence credible, he will issue you a piece of paper called a "search warrant", and you can then take this piece of paper to the house, car or other residence of the person you suspect, and perform a meticulous search for evidence of drug law contravention. Things that you discover that do, in fact, contravene the law may allow you to return to the judge and get other pieces of paper to search other things, like a pharmacist's records.
This little know law is found in an equally obscure document called "The Constitution", in the Fourth Amendment to the "Bill of Rights" section.
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
Apparently Civics is no longer taught in our schools.
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