Drama at LCSO

LIBERTY, June 25, 2014 - Tuesday i-dineout.com received an unsolicited response from Liberty County Sheriff Bobby Rader concerning our article LCSO Obtains Plastic Explosives in which we asked several questions.

We asked in our article “What does this small department need or want with plastic explosives?”,  and “What is this material and its intended use?” According to Sheriff Rader, “the LCSO has indeed purchased some explosive material. The purpose of this material is for what is known as “explosive breaching.” This material would be used in the rare circumstance where LCSO needs to make a lawful entry into a heavily reinforced house or building.”

We also asked in our article, “So why now? What has changed to make the purchase of this kind of material useful and necessary?” According to Sheriff Rader, “There are now elements of transnational drug cartels, supremacist movements and “sovereign citizen” movements in Liberty County. These subjects are known to “harden” their homes and buildings to make immediate entry by law enforcement difficult, if not impossible by the old method  of “kicking in a door.” Sovereign citizen movements sounds like the Tea Party and Rader intends to go after their “harden” homes and buildings with plastic explosives.

According to the Anti-Defamation League, who study such things, the sovereign Citizen Movement began around 1970 and was fully developed by early 1980. They have anti-government ideology and some contain elements of white supremacy.  These groups have existed for more than forty years yet LCSO has never felt it necessary to have explosives. So Sheriff Rader, we still ask, WHY NOW!

People with creative minds and a flare for the dramatic make all sorts of claims and do all sorts of things that in hindsight appear ridiculous.

Take the case of another small, poor Texas County, Kaufman County in east Texas. In the first part of 2013 a DA, his wife and an assistant prosecutor were gunned down which immediately started an intense investigation. It was first reported that law enforcement was looking into a possible connection for the killings at Mexican Drug Cartels. Then later, it was the Aryan brotherhood that was targeted as the possible cause and a Houston prosecutor who was trying a case involving an Aryan brotherhood member withdrew from the case thinking that he as well could become a target for the group.

However, in a small, poor, Texas county, one must look at the more obvious culprits. As it turned out a local JP aided by his wife, who had been tried and convicted of theft and lost his county job, county health insurance and benefits had decided to get even with the DA and prosecutor that convicted him, picked up gun, got in the car and gunned down all three of them. Now doesn’t that make a lot more sense than all the drama created by blaming the Aryan Brotherhood or Mexican Drug Cartels? County jobs in small, poor counties are highly valued and life means little to some of the crazy people involved. The threat to Kaufman County is NOT the Aryan Brotherhood or Mexican Drug Cartels. Their threat is far more local and NOW with more accurate focus they are dealing with it in the courts.

But people with a flair for the dramatic are everywhere, even here. Just a few months ago fire departments, Equusearch, the FBI, the Texas Rangers and others were called to the middle of Liberty County at midnight to search a small subdivision for a high school girl that, according to the missing persons flyer, had possibly been abducted.   Sounds dramatic, doesn’t it. However, as it turned out the girl had just gone to her boyfriend’s house in Daisetta to spend the night without telling her parents where she was going. Creative minds from people with a flair for drama can come up with all sorts of things and put on a real show while failing to consider the obvious.

Only a few days ago a backpack was found in a public area of the Post Office in Rye, TX. Assuming the worst, thinking that the small post office in Rye, TX may be a target of extremists or evil-doers the Sheriff’s Office contacted the FBI, ATF and members of the Baytown and Pasadena Task Force to respond closing the Post Office for four hours. The backpack was X-Rayed and its' contents turned out to be nothing more than someone’s dirty laundry.

And, according to Sheriff Rader, “There are now elements of transnational drug cartels, supremacist movements and “sovereign citizen” movements in Liberty County,” and we need to have plastic explosives to manage them.

According to Sheriff Rader, “You stated, these big boy law enforcement toys like they have in the movies are the kinds of things not purchased out of the annual LCSO Budget approved by Commissioner’s Court. These types of purchases are made with drug seizure money that is largely not audited by the county unless something comes up.” Sheriff Rader went on to say, “You are correct in your assumption that these materials were purchased using seized drug funds awarded to LCSO through the court process.”

If the purchase of plastic explosives is necessary and commonplace and it was only a small amount, then why not put this small purchase in the LCSO Budget which is public, rather than purchase it with drug seizure money where the purchase will avoid public scrutiny of any kind not commonly being audited by the County? Why keep it secret in an open and fee society? Why hide and conceal the purchase?”

Sheriff Rader also mentions the fact that LPD at one time had a Fugitive or SWAT Unit back in the 1990. That’s true.  It was created to handle difficult warrant service and never involved the use of plastic explosives.

Sheriff Rader states, “If you would contact me or my official spokespersons first, instead of starting directly with an open records request, we would be pleased to try and get you the information you seek.”

I always love it when elected politicians tell the news media how to do their work after the fact. They know little of it. Secondly Sheriff Rader, are you telling me that all I had to do was ask for the information and you would have just turned it over? Please quit pulling my leg. We did ask with an Open Records request weeks ago and you have fought us tooth and nail to prevent the release of the information we requested and it is now a matter for scrutiny by the Attorney General of the State of Texas all at your own doing. We didn’t do any of that. YOU DID!

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