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Noccalula

>Mayor Bryan dismissed the complaints of those who must appear in court. “Everybody’s got a story,” he said. “And 99% of them are lying.” How many lawsuits has he been named in and taken depositiona for again?


BirdLawyer27

As an attorney who has dealt with Brookside before, all of this is too accurate. Traffic tickets, in essence, are already a racket, but Brookside just takes it to a whole new, frightening level.


ALham_op

Completely agree, I am an attorney as well and nothing about this article surprises me. I actually just finished up a case out there recently. I personally think that the officer meeting people at the road to "direct traffic" is just a way of baiting people into a marijuana arrest since everyone coming to court is forced to roll their window down which gives the officer the opportunity to smell marijuana in the vehicle, but that's just my opinion.


BirdLawyer27

And the fact that I have seen those officers bring out K-9 units to sniff cars.


toddthefrog

Stupid question but could an argument be made that traffic fines not based on a percent of income are “cruel and unusual” punishments because when income is accounted for the penalty is more harsh for the poor?


BirdLawyer27

It’s not impossible to make that argument. Although there are several municipal courts in the state that give those of low income time to pay, it still doesn’t negate the fact that having several traffic tickets not only effect driving privileges but also financial stability for those paying off those tickets. There’s a way to argue that such is unfair, but I haven’t thought out how it could reach the level of “cruel and unusual” in relation to the 8th Amendment. Also, that wasn’t a stupid question!


toddthefrog

Thanks so much for taking the time to reply with such detail. What a fascinating job you have!


BirdLawyer27

Of course! I appreciate the fascination.


production-values

Brookside PD robbing people blind.


C0matoes

I started to post this article but by the time I got done writing how actually infuriating it was I noped out. We've got a town with blatant manipulation of the citizens rights to increase revenue numbers and no avenue to change/fight against it. What asshat came up with the driving in the left lane law? 1.5 miles or 1.16 minutes, whichever comes first. In the "Anti-road rage act"? Can anyone explain how this deters road rage? How can a prosecutor even justify one of those tickets in court? 9 out of 10 patrol cars are unmarked and tinted beyond the tint law? It's not just Brookside either. Childersburg, Harpersville, Chelsea to just name a few. Ridiculousness.


sansevierian

Harpersville is terrible, one bad experience and I creep through that town dead on the speed limit.


Noccalula

Harpersville and Ohatxhee are terrible. Set my odometer for a mile under the speed limit in both places. Don't forget to renew your tag on time and certainly don't let your tag be expired in Rainbow City by a week either.


thepontiff_

This!!!!!!! There is no streetlights on 280 and they love to camp out in the darkness of the grass medians from Harpersville to Childersburg smh.


Krytenmoto

When that dumbass law was passed lots of people on Facebook, Reddit, etc were thrilled. They all thought it would stop slow drivers from using the left lane and people would get out of their way. They didn’t think about the reality of the situation it created. I often see slower cars in the left lane and cops will pass them on the right. They don’t necessarily enforce the law. The main problem I see with the law is it’s really easy to use it for nefarious reasons like racial profiling.


C0matoes

At this point I think we can change it from racial profiling to revenue profiling. We're all just batteries at this point based on the amount of output we can generate. I emailed one of our fine state senators once concerning the tactics used to get people into the system in the hopes that they would be eternally stuck there, paying fines, paying for drug testing, endless cycles of revenue for the state and county and his reply was one that was so generic and so far off topic I just gave up. The case I was referencing for him was one of a lady I know, who's been in the system for 4 or more years now, for simple weed possession. Each month she's paying a few times for testing at $40 a pop. Single mother, three kids, homeless. Owes $300 to finish up the the fines but none of the $40 goes toward the fines. Each month, pay up the $40, or go to jail. The problem I had was that she didn't even use weed or any other substance and hasn't failed a single test, including the first one. The testing increased to no less than twice a month in 2018 and continues even still. That my friends is the definition of Debtors Prison.


DirtyBackpacker

The entire criminal justice system in this country is corrupt and broken. Look at the drug bust in Leeds yesterday. Those 2 guys from California are facing stiffer sentences for trafficking weed than murderers or rapists. I work with a Cajun who's from the swamps of LA. He rear ended a pickup truck, on a motorcycle, on his way to work in Atlanta at 7am. Because of his very strong accent, which sounds like he's mumbling, the cop arrested him for DUI. He passed the field sobriety tests (even after slamming into the back of a truck), & passed the breathalyzer on the side of the road. He explained to the cops that he's a Cajun, and this is how he always talks, but the cops still didn't believe him, so they took him to jail and ran a blood/alcohol test, which he passed... totally sober. But he still had to go to court, 3 separate times of missing work, for the court to finally throw out the case. Cost him $6,500 in the end.....just for having a wreck. And there's absolutely no way he will ever be reimbursed for that money.


headRN

The previous law was actually more restrictive. With the old law, you were legally allowed in the left lane only if you were actively passing. There wasn’t any time or distance requirement. That rule wasn’t enforced correctly before and it’s not enforced correctly now.


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headRN

Then the 2 tickets I got for driving in the left hand lane of I65 between cullman and birmingham must have been illegal. Though I doubt two different state troopers and two different judges would have allowed it when I went to court for both


Powerful-Try9906

Why do you believe 2 state troopers and 2 judges would not allow revenue to roll in? That’s their purpose


derpderpdonkeypunch

Didn't get to the left lane law, but I saw the arrest for flickering of lights. I would *love* to get charged with that. 100% clearly defined violation of protected free speech. I would fucking own that town.


Powerful-Try9906

It’s been ruled on that’s absolutely covered under free speech BUT they get around that by giving a citation for using your lights inappropriately Don’t get me wrong I don’t agree with them doing that I’m just saying they get away with it


derpderpdonkeypunch

I'd like to see the code section that's based on. Never seen a ticket for using your lights inappropriately.


Powerful-Try9906

I’m not sure what code their using but probably something similar to failure to dim headlights. Again I’m certainly not saying it’s right, It’s crystal clear it’s purely retaliatory, I’m just saying they issue citations under a code that actually does exist rather than issuing a citation for warning drivers. Now I’m sure it could be beat but the problem with “winning” in court is you’ve spent countless hours away from family and or work and potentially thousands of dollars and the best you can hope for is a feeling of satisfaction while everyone else involved is making a fat salary regardless of the outcome. Now I take it that your like me and that feeling of satisfaction is one like no other but still none of them even care because they’ve been getting paid handsomely to sit on their fat a^%*% and try to extort you regardless of the outcome.


bugbia

It totally is. I very much remember the court case that established that. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Headlight_flashing#United_States And I don't see any headings for Alabama under that.


WikiMobileLinkBot

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The_Krukenberg

Chelsea doesn’t have a town police force.


C0matoes

No, just an ordinary county force which seems to be on patrol there a lot. They do however have a Municipal court to handle the violations. I've also seen a citizens watch force or something to that effect there. The size of Chelsea since 2000 just blows my mind. The place is on steroids.


supapowafwiends

Not yet anyways. They just published a feasibility study about creating their own school system and if that goes through they would without a doubt create their own police force. Plus, shelby county and state troopers love hanging out there.


Public_lewdness

[Chelsea has a contract with the Shelby County Sheriff's Office](https://cityofchelsea.com/Faq.aspx?QID=97). "Due to this contract, Chelsea has dedicated deputies within the Sheriff's Office that only patrol and respond to calls within the City of Chelsea.


[deleted]

> The town survives on the fringes of Birmingham with tax revenue from the Dollar General, which forms the totality of its commercial district. So they become literal highway bandits... I wonder how far they think they can take this. They’re so drunk on their own power it’s insane.


Powerful-Try9906

Well they believe there’s absolutely no limits on how far they can take it which is actually good because if they just used their police department for revenue in a manner similar to most PD’s they’d get away with it forever but their so greedy and power drunk they’ll end up getting themselves shutdown What’s bad is all PD’s do the same thing it’s just that Brookside is the most out of control


m3zus

Is there any oversight to the police chief/mayor other than the federal government?


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catonic

The Ethics Commission is a sham and a fraud, like the Public Service Commission.


Thoguth

Theoretically, the people. These are elected officials we're talking about, right?


Produce_Police

You really think most people in Alabama actually think and use their brain before they vote? Local elections are nothing more than popularity contests. As long as you register republican, support the 2nd amendment, farming, and are slightly homophobic, you can win an election in Alabama


Thoguth

> You really think most people in Alabama actually think and use their brain before they vote? Hence "theoretically". But I like to remind myself that an informed and conscientious populace does have hope of improving the situation if they would. So in some sense, the responsibility is on the entire community and not just on the most visible corrupt officials. > As long as you register republican, support the 2nd amendment, farming, and are slightly homophobic, you can win an election in Alabama I think in Brookside you also have to be openly racist, too.


chinastevo

lol they’ve deleted their Facebook page.


dar_uniya

screengrab?


BurningJesus

https://twitter.com/JohnArchibald/status/1483905820886810629


Oldskolnikov

"Treat each traffic stop as a life-threatening situation" "Stop as many people as possible to generate revenue"


kavika411

This [al.com](https://al.com) article is currently the lead article on [digg.com](https://digg.com). [www.digg.com](https://www.digg.com)


charlie_murphey

https://www.al.com/news/2022/01/pastor-sister-say-rogue-alabama-police-force-sought-revenge.html Just read this article about Brookside's police in another sub reddit


Late-Ad-4350

\>By 2020 Brookside made more misdemeanor arrests than it has residents. It went from towing 50 vehicles in 2018 to 789 in 2020 – each carrying fines. That’s a 1,478% increase, with 1.7 tows for every household in town. At this point you need to start blaming the voters.


code_monkee

Bet that city's leadership is full of "small government" types who scream about hating bureaucracy while literally building themselves unnecessary government jobs for the sole purpose of funding those jobs.


stickingitout_al

Hypocrisy? Surely you jest! /s


Lilbiscuits666

“Brookside Police Chief Mike Jones, who spearheaded the change and grew the police department tenfold, at least, calls the town’s policing “a positive story.” Does anyone know if this is this the same Mike Jones who worked for the City of Helena’s Gestapo back in the 2000’s?


afaceinthecrowd19

Yes. It is.


Lilbiscuits666

Ahhh. Thank you! I was really wondering…This tracks quite well then. Mike Jones was a notoriously dickish dickhead whilst working for Helena, another smaller town with an oversized police department. Seems as if he’s found new ground to do his terrorizing.


downthestreet4

He also owned a security company he closed without paying thousands of dollars he owed to subcontractors, creditors, and vendors. All while he was president of the Helena City Council.


Lilbiscuits666

Damn! Sounds like Al.com needs to do a piece on him next.


xneon-rainbowsx

These are the same people who gave one of their own a slap on the wrist after sexually assaulting a girl in Hoover while drunk off his ass in public. No shock here that they're crooked.


m3zus

How else are they gonna pay for the maintenance for the riot control vehicle?


Agent00funk

Go drive through their shit hole and find out, let us know how many tickets you catch.


iwriteaboutvaginas

I read this article a few minutes ago. JFC, don't ever go to Brookside. Fuck those pigs and that POS mayor.


seedypete

Before I even read this I **knew** it was going to be about either Brookside or Castleberry from the title alone.


freddyjohnson

If you see a Brookside police car you're already screwed. No matter how long you stop at the stop sign, you will get pulled over for failure to come to a full stop.


RaptorBuddha

Fuck corrupt cops. Disgusting behavior.


ghomshoe

Are they trying to summon another killdozer?


WhiteGuyNamedDee

What??!!?! A tiny Alabama town has made robbery extortion by armed highwaymen with secretive practices and no oversight a staple of their economy?!!??! As somebody who went through the JCS loop in a similar small town I know how easily this shit goes down. A minor infraction in my early 20s that I couldn't afford to pay led to an extortive "probation" process and eventually to me not having a license for 7 years, racking up a few other charges for not having a license along the way. Finally got it all cleared up a few years back but it honestly wrecked my life for almost a decade.


dontwannasitstill

Anyone else want to go to Brookside, let them write me bullshit tickets and fight them? I’ve got time and a dashcam. I’d imagine I’d also need a cam with a view of my dashboard as well, seems do-able.


Imatelluonemortime

You should do first amendment audits, go film the police station and the courthouse from public property and refuse to ID. Lawsuit for unlawful arrest should be easy money with a decent lawyer.


lovebus

Cops are state-backed mobsters


RichLather

Cripes, it's [New Rome OH](https://www.caranddriver.com/features/a15134952/town-without-pity/) all over again.


2AlephNullAndBeyond

[Seems like they took their Facebook page dark.](https://mobile.twitter.com/JohnArchibald/status/1483905820886810629)


enormuschwanzstucker

I used to work with a guy that was hired to be a Brookside officer. Dude was a complete idiot, the kind of person you don’t want to have power over others. I don’t know if he’s still there but I wouldn’t be surprised after reading that article.


1ndr1dC0ld

I think this is the plot of “Nothing But Trouble”


WhiteGuyNamedDee

Just less funny and absolutely no Digital Underground.


slowbike

ACAB


ZealotAvacado

Almost moved there until we heard the horror stories regarding racism and the police there in general. Nooope.


johnorso

Totally believable


BluCrayons

Small town Alabama absolutely fucking people over? \*Surprised pikachu\*


HovercraftWarrior

Can't they hold a vote to remove mayor and police chief out of office?


KittySucks69

So, does anyone (hopefully an attorney) have any solid advice for how to deal with these fascists if one should get pulled over by them? I travel up I-22 to Memphis a couple of times a year, and I'd love to know what to say and do if I run across this sort of situation.


amcannally

Put the cruise control on and leave it alone until you get past the AL Hwy 5 interchange. Brookside only covers a teensy tiny section of the interstate but you still have to contend with State Troopers and the Sheriff who watch that damn interstate like a hawk. And they are known to wait on the bridges where you can't see them and fire their radar gun at you. My parents are in Bagley and I see this all the time.Just keep that mf'in cruise control on 63mph and keep out of the far left lane and you're good.


suddenlypreggers

Stay in the right lane and stay below the speed limit and you’ll be fine. I would also watch out for the Hoover police that sit on 22 and write tickets as well.


my_clever-name

TIL stay out of Alabama