Louisville, KY — As the Free Thought Project reports on a regular basis, cops across the country are often caught committing the same crimes for which they routinely kidnap and cage people. From stealing from charities to selling drugs they steal from their jobs as cops, many police officers have proven to be as bad or worse than than the criminals from which they claim to protect society. The following instance out of Kentucky of a cop running a steroid ring highlights this hypocrisy quite well and it exposes the sheer lack of accountability they face when they do so.
Scott County Sheriff’s Deputy Joe Baker and Reserve Officer Phillip E. Thomas both pleaded guilty to both using steroids and running a steroid ring in which they sold drugs to their fellow officers. Instead of jail, however, they both received less than one year of probation. The special treatment given to these cops is disgusting considering they made careers out of ruining people’s lives for the exact same thing.
Last year, Scott County deputy Joe Baker took to Facebook to brag about kidnapping and caging people for possessing cannabis.
He also arrested his own sister for drugs two years ago.
Obviously these arrests particularly hypocritical given the fact that deputy Baker, himself, was charged with three felonies, including conspiracy to deal steroids, official misconduct and possession of a hypodermic needle, as well as the misdemeanor charge of possession of a controlled substance.
According to WDRB, Thomas, 32, faced only the misdemeanor charge of possession of a controlled substance. An investigation found that he had illegal steroids and testosterone in his house. Thomas also admitted to injecting the drugs into Baker about 75 times.
Last year, Scott County Sheriff Jerry Goodin asked Indiana State Police to investigate after receiving a tip that Deputy Joe Baker and Reserve Officer Phil Thomas were involved in dealing illegal steroids.
“He immediately stepped into action and contacted us,” ISP Sgt. Carey Huls said. “We worked side by side to make sure everything was above board and done properly. And that was one reason Sheriff Goodin contacted our department. He didn’t want anybody thinking they were hiding any information or covering anything up in their department.”
The investigation would find out that Baker and Thomas were, in fact, not only using illegal steroids, but running an operation and conspiracy to sell them.
“Officer Baker was a school resource officer,” Goodin said. “He had been assigned to one of the schools here in the community, and I wanted it done before school opened back up on Monday.”
In a Facebook post after his arrest, Baker apologized to the community “with humility and shame running down my face” for the crimes he committed. While everyone deserves to be forgiven for their mistakes, the hypocrisy of taking people’s freedom for similar acts, while committing those same acts, speaks volumes.
Nevertheless, the community rallied around this cop — who betrayed his oath to the constitution and the community he served. People all over Facebook and the media bent over backward to show their support for this officer at the time of his arrest, and now the court has followed suit.
It is important to point out that TFTP doesn’t think any drug should be illegal, including steroids. If people want to take performance enhancing steroids, who are we to stop them. But deputy Baker hypocritically kidnapped and caged so many other people for these substances while selling and using them at the same time, which means he should most assuredly face accountability. What’s more, although we feel anyone should be able to do any drug they wish, it is not at all a good idea to allow people in law enforcement, with authority to use violence against citizens, to use these drugs as they are associated with rage.
The dangers of cops taking steroids are obvious, as the rage associated with their use can become uncontrollable. All too often, we see police officers immediately escalate situations to violence when de-escalation would have been far easier and safer. Steroids could be the reason.
“I keep seeing all of these cases where the level of anger and violence shown by officers makes no sense,” says Gregory Gilbertson, a former Atlanta cop who teaches criminal justice in the Seattle area and works as a legal expert on police standards and practices. “And when things don’t make sense, they don’t make sense for a reason…Maybe steroid rage is a reason so many police officers seem so angry and aggressive.”
Cops on the juice feel indestructible, as if they have superhuman strength.
Or as the DEA puts it, “The idea of enhanced physical strength and endurance provides one with ‘the invincible mentality’ when performing law enforcement duties.”
Starting to make sense now?
“Reasonable suspicion should be raised if they shoot somebody or beat the living daylights out of somebody,” Dan Handelman, a founding member of Portland Copwatch told Alternet. “In some of these recent cases, the officers seemed to be pumped up and were not necessarily working in a calm and level-headed manner. We wonder how much of this was coming from natural adrenalin and how much coming from other substances.”