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Airport Sued Over Behavioral Profiling
Police Question Passengers With Odd, Suspicious Behavior

POSTED: 12:49 pm EST November 10, 2004
UPDATED: 12:53 pm EST November 10, 2004

BOSTON -- A civil rights group filed a lawsuit Wednesday challenging a controversial security system at Logan International Airport that allows police to stop and question people they believe demonstrate suspicious mannerisms.

Logan was the first airport in the country to launch new baggage screening practices at each terminal. In November 2002, it began the nation's first "behavioral recognition program," in which police stop and question passengers with odd or suspicious behavior.

The lawsuit, filed in Suffolk Superior Court by the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts, comes three years after the Sept. 11 terror attacks were launched from Logan. Since then, the airport has won numerous accolades for overhauling its security system.

"This program is another unfortunate example of the extent to which we are being asked to surrender basic freedoms in the name of security," said John Reinstein, legal director of the ACLU of Massachusetts. "This allows the police to stop anyone, any time, for any reason."

The process, based on a program at Israel's airports, trains police to look for behavior that is considered odd or suspicious. State police have insisted that they do not select people to question based on ethnicity or race.

But Reinstein said the lawsuit is based on an incident involving King Downing, the national coordinator of the ACLU's Campaign Against Racial Profiling, who was approached by police on Oct. 16, 2003, after arriving at Logan to attend a Boston meeting on racial profiling.

Downing, an African-American who wears a short beard, said he left the gate area and was making a phone call in the public terminal when he was stopped by a state trooper who asked that he produce identification.

When Downing declined to do so without knowing the basis for the request, he was told that he would have to leave the airport, according to the lawsuit. When he attempted to leave the terminal, he was stopped again, surrounded by four troopers and told that he was being placed under arrest for failing to produce identification, the lawsuit claims.

When Downing finally agreed to show his driver's license, the troopers then demanded to see his airline ticket, according to the suit. After police inspected his identification and travel documents, he was allowed to leave and no charges were ever filed against him.

The two planes that brought down New York's World Trade Center were hijacked after taking off from Logan on Sept. 11, 2001.




One would think that in the post 9/11 world that police should not only be allowed to question people acting suspiciously, they (dare i say) SHOULD! How far is this rediculous going to go...that's what I want to know!
 

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I just don't get it. What is the big deal of showing your id in an airport. I am a big supporter of individual rights but come on. Were is the harm in asking someone for their id. And as far as singling someone out on the basis of there race, Lets see, what race were all the 911 terrorists? :roll:
I would be really pissed if the SPs or other airport security were shaking down a little old lady when Mohamed Adda breezed through security.
If it sounds like a duck, walks like a duck , and looks like a duck, then maybe it is a duck.
 

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"no one loves a soldier til the enemy is at the gates"

these are the same people that will say after another attack that the agencies involved in anti terrorism should have prevented despite the liberal restrictions that they want placed on said agencies. they should have cuffed and stuffed him.

I have said it before in another post and I will say it again, some people have no clue what it takes to defend a nation. if this lawsuit causes policy changes then all these poeple have done is weakened a nation!
 

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If you don't like the possiblity of being questioned because of your behavior.....don't go to Logan Airport. It's that simple.

To me it goes back to; only those who have something to hide are the ones who complain about this. :NO:
 

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"Surrender basic freedoms...." like bringing weapons on a plane? Show your ID and STFU. You're not important enough to be profiled.
 

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Who wants to bet that "King Downing" of the ACLU went there and acted like an idiot so that he would be questioned and could file a civil suit?

And while I'm here, who names their kid after Sergeant Preston's (of the Yukon) dog?
 
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I'm a supporter of "submit or die" security. :evil:
I am with DCS2244 on this one. Also like some other people said if you don't like it then don't go there you have a couple more airports to chose from if your willing to drive. Also these people bitch that we don't do enough but god forbid you ask them for an ID or there boarding pass wow people are so two-faced when it comes to security they want it but they just don't want the process to effect them in anyway.
 
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