The Supreme Court unanimously says states can’t steal your car


On Wednesday, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that it’s unconstitutional for states to steal people’s cars. That’s a great step forward in cracking down on civil asset forfeiture and the practice of states and cities seizing personal property as a means to raise money.

The decision is a victory for Tyson Timbs, an Indiana man who had been fighting the state to get his $42,000 Land Rover SUV back after it was seized during his arrest. He had purchased the vehicle with the proceeds from an insurance policy he received after his father’s death.

Nonetheless, the state thought that his guilty plea to selling a few hundred dollars in heroin to undercover police officers entitled them to the vehicle on the grounds that he had used it to transport drugs. As the Supreme Court explained, however, the forfeiture of the vehicle amounted to “more than four times the maximum $10,000 monetary fine assessable against Timbs for his drug conviction.”  more here

16 Comments on The Supreme Court unanimously says states can’t steal your car

  1. Is it possible for any organization to find creative new ways of taking the people’s money more than governments? Someone discovered a few years ago a tax on our phone bills that the government enacted over a 100 years ago to pay for the Spanish-American war.

    That’s clumsily written but I think the point is clear.

  2. If the government can’t steal your stuff, where are they going to get all the free stuff to give the poor people and illegals?

  3. Have you ever noticed the government rarely, if ever, charges homeless people with crimes or fines.
    Obviously, there’s nothing to gain unless the person is a working citizen and/or property owner.

  4. You lock your house doors at night to keep out burglars. How much of your stuff has been taken by night burglars in your entire life? But people seem to be OK with 25% of everything they earn being taken by the government.

  5. money quote: “… Indiana Supreme Court justified the state’s seizure of the vehicle on the grounds that Eighth Amendment protections against excessive fines did not apply to states.

    The U.S. Supreme Court disagreed, ruling that Eighth Amendment protections, including the prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment, excessive bail, protections against excessive fines, and other government abuses, are all “fundamental to our scheme of ordered liberty” and that states are bound to follow them … “

    wish the Supremes would give the same amount of credence to Second Amendment abuses by the States

  6. If the Eighth Amendment does not apply to states, then why does the Fifth? That was a stupid argument if I ever heard one.

    Tim Butku: the excise tax on tires that was collected at least until the ‘80’s was to pay for World War II.

  7. Will County Illinois is notorious for crime seizures. So much so, it’s commonly a joke on local news sites to ask about seizures for petty crimes.

    If you’re going to get a DUI in Will County, you better be driving a shitbox. Steal from the local WalMart? Hey, that’s a really neat 1989 Chrysler minivan, Glasgow wants it.

    Just the same, out here in the sticks. Our states attorney is on trial for drug interdiction procedures along I80 that netted millions of dollars, WITHOUT A SINGLE CRIMINAL CHARGE!

    Highway robbery, is what it is. I hope anyone involved with civil forfeiture or seizure of property by police can now sue for their property!

    I typically side with the police. But just thinking about property being stolen by them makes my blood curdle, I hate cops just thinking about it.


    “We can do anything we want, unless the Supreme Court tells us we can’t, and then we will learn nothing from it.”

    The Constitution errors on the side of The People, not the government, unless you are a liberal or other form of scumbag.

    Your sacred cow needs further examination. Do you remember the kid smoking marijuana in his GRANDMOTHER’S HOME and sold a few joints? They confiscated the home that wasn’t his.

  9. The money hawks in the State Governments will do their best to work around this. They are hooked on the scam and have been for years. It will be tough for them to back off the easy money.

  10. Can’t trust the Supreme court either, especially now with a dead Gindsburg actually siding with the people 9 – 0 in a court ruling. She has to be kept alive in spirit, as demonic as it may be, so Trump can’t appoint a better replacement. Still no real proof of her being really alive, but an alleged apparition of her can be created by a double or by hologramic technology. Would the powers that be lie to the American public? Yes, and always yes! The recent video of her supposedly dated for now was recorded a year ago in an airport. Just because something appears to be true, doesn’t make it so.

  11. “Sounds like they did. A case could be made that states have to follow 2a.”

    That could very well happen. Ruthie was quoting from McDonald in her opinion. Remember, McDonald is where SCOTUS finally said, Yes, RKBA does apply to all the states, not just DC.”

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