Here’s the latest effort from the state’s liberal media to diminish the effect of the Texas build-up of state highway patrol along the border with Mexico: “Most border arrests by Texas troopers are not for drug smuggling,” was the headline in the Texas Tribune.
“DPS has added more troopers to the border under the assumed objective that they’re going after drug and human smugglers. But most of their arrests are for drunk driving and misdemeanor drug possession,” read the subhead.
And you can see where this is going. But anyone who understands the basics of probable cause the history of drug busts will understand that there is nothing in this that’s an indicator that the border build-up is ineffective.
One must have probable cause in order to stop someone. You can’t pull someone over because you look at them and think “Wow! Those guys look like drug smugglers!” DPS troopers must have a reason to make a stop such as weaving in traffic, speeding, etc. and it only makes sense that most stops made would result in something other than the higher level crime of drug smuggling.
Second, if you review the press each day as do I you would realize that almost all busts of drug smugglers happens due to a stop justified by a traffic violation. We see such on Texas highways every week where a traffic stop results in a search which uncovers large quantities of drugs.
I’m all for keeping tabs on the effectiveness of DPS and the money we are spending on supplementary border security. However, I think media efforts like this by Josh Hinkle of KXAN and published at the Texas Tribune, are little more than work to undermine public support of border security by using specious arguments.