New Orleans Cancels Secret Pre-Crime Police Program

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New Orleans Cancels Secret Pre-Crime Police Program After Media Exposure

By Nicholas West

I’m happy to report some good news coming out of New Orleans thanks  to the excellent investigative reporting of Ali Winston with The Verge.

As I reported two weeks ago,  Winston helped to uncover a secret predictive policing program that had  been ongoing for 6 years by the New Orleans PD in cooperation with  CIA-connected Palantir Technologies. The program had been designed to  operate behind the cover of a philanthropic partnership orchestrated by  political operative James Carville so as to avoid having to disclose the  details to citizens and even to their elected representatives in the  city council. Now it appears that the intrepid reporting of Ali Winston  has led to the abrupt cancelling of the program just a short time after  the initial article was published.


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Yesterday, outgoing New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s press office told the Times-Picayune  that his office would not renew its pro bono contract with Palantir,  which has been extended three times since 2012. The remarks were the  first from Landrieu’s office concerning Palantir’s work with the NOPD.  The mayor did not respond to repeated requests for comment from The Verge for the February 28th article, done in partnership with Investigative Fund, or from local media since news of the partnership broke.

According to Ali Winston’s latest article, there also could be legal repercussions for those involved in cases that stemmed from the secret data collection.

Yesterday, Orleans Criminal District Court Judge Camille  Buras agreed to hear a motion from Kentrell Hickerson challenging his  racketeering and drug conspiracy convictions. Hickerson’s attorney,  Kevin Vogeltanz, filed his motion  with the court on March 8th, citing the nondisclosure of any relevant  intelligence from Palantir about his client’s alleged involvement in the  3NG street gang as a potential violation of Hickerson’s rights. Under  the Supreme Court case Brady v. Maryland, defendants have the right to procure any and all potentially exculpatory evidence assembled against them by law enforcement.

We’ll continue to keep you updated on this story. In the meantime,  this illustrates how important good journalism is in a day of  concentrated power in media and the ramping up of a Ministry of Truth  driven by tech giants who want to control narratives that lead off the  beaten path. Clearly, we still can have an effect and thwart their  dominance so long as people are willing to take action and continue  doing everything they can to share vital information.

Naturally, much more still needs to be done in the name of preserving freedom and holding authorities accountable, as New Orleans remains one of the models for the urban police state. At least they have been made aware that someone, somewhere will be watching them as well.

Nicholas West writes for Activist Post. Support us at Patreon. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Steemit, and BitChute. Ready for solutions? Subscribe to our premium newsletter Counter Markets.

Image credit: Phys.org

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