Fresno, CA — As the Free Thought Project points out — on a daily basis — often times, the most trusted members of society are the most criminal individuals out there. This point is made recently in Fresno, California as the former Deputy Police Chief, one of the most trusted men in town, was found guilty on federal drug trafficking charges.
To be clear, the Free Thought Project has reported on the atrocities and unintended consequences of the prohibition of arbitrary substances by the state. So, someone providing a willing adult with a product that they want for themselves is not morally wrong, as there is no victim.
That being said, however, when a person who claims the legal authority to kidnap, cage, and kill you over those substances — uses their authority to deal in those very substances — this is not only hypocritical, it is tyrannical.
Deputy Keith Foster is one of these individuals who locked people in a cage for things he was doing himself — but on a much larger scale.
Luckily, the residents of California, through the court system, saw this man's hypocritical tyranny and found him guilty of it.
Twelve jurors reached a unanimous verdict on two counts of conspiring to distribute heroin and marijuana, ABC 30 reports. They were hung on the remaining six charges.
As the Fresno Bee reports, the jury deadlocked on six charges, including five counts involving the distribution of oxycodone. The sixth deadlock charge accused Foster of using a cellphone in furtherance of drug trafficking.
"The only word that is coming through my mind right now is 'tragedy,'" Foster's attorney, Marshal Hodgkins said after the outcome.
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How, exactly, is a corrupt cop getting found guilty, who was running a massive heroin ring, knowing that there is an epidemic of heroin overdoses plaguing America right now, a tragedy? Indeed, it is the exact opposite. Had he stayed on the force and kept his badge, that, Mr. Hodgkins, would have been a tragedy.
US Attorney Phillip A. Talbert also released a statement, reading in part, "Although the jury was not able to reach verdicts on the additional counts relating to Foster's alleged involvement in trafficking oxycodone, we are grateful for their hard work and the guilty verdicts they returned."
Naturally, after being found guilty of betraying his community and running a massive drug trafficking ring, Foster was given blue privilege and allowed to remain free on his own recognizance.
While the Free Thought Project didn't pull the records for how many times convicted leaders of massive heroin trafficking rings are allowed free on their own recognizance until their sentencing dates, we are betting that it probably never happens — unless, of course, you're a cop.
“It’s unfortunate, but that’s our system,” Hodgkins said of the verdict as his client walked out of the courtroom on free bail. “We tried the case we wanted.”
Foster will now remain a free man until he is sentenced in October. He is now facing the possibility of 20 years in prison and up to $1 million in fines for the heroin conviction, and up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine for the marijuana conviction. However, judging from his special treatment already, it is highly unlikely that he'll see anything close to that time.
"The badge does not change humanity," said Roger Bonakdar, an attorney in the Central Valley.
In a statement this week, US Attorney Talbert summed up the situation perfectly by noting, “When a police officer misuses his official position to commit crimes for personal profit, it is the ultimate betrayal of public trust. The betrayal is only compounded when the officer involved is in a leadership position in the police department. By conspiring with others to traffic heroin and marijuana, Keith Foster not only disgraced the office he held, he put the community he was sworn to protect in danger.”