Tapes Document Strange Police Focus on One Miami Gardens Store


The Miami Herald reports on the strange activities of Miami Gardens police officers at a convenience store in the city of 107,000, third-largest in Miami-Dade County. The paper says Earl Sampson, 28, has been stopped and questioned by Miami Gardens police 258 times in four years, searched more than 100 times and jailed 56 times. He has been arrested 62 times for trespassing alone. And nearly nearly every citation was issued at the same convenience store.

But Sampson isn't loitering. He works as a clerk there. The store's owner, Alex Saleh, 36, says Sampson, his other employees and his customers are stopped and frisked day after day. Most of them, like Sampson, are poor and black. Saleh installed 15 video cameras in his store–not to protect himself from criminals, but to protect himself and his customers from police. The Herald says images from those tapes raise troubling questions about the strange police conduct. The police chief has declined to explain his officers’ focus on the store. Saleh says he plans to sue.

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