“Crime Crusher” Blockade Status Studied By Court

August 8, 1947
Los Angeles

ACLU representative A.L. Wirin, an attorney, is asking Superior Judge Henry M. Willis to rule that those recent “crime crusher” street blockades are unconstitutional and must be stopped. The search and seizure of property belonging to people who just happen to be driving through a blockaded intersection is, Wirin states, “intolerable and unreasonable.”

Police claim a decrease of 18.2 percent in reported crimes in the blockades sections of the city, and seek to continue the practice. In an affidavit filed at the Court, Assistant Chief of Police Joseph Reed insisted that only cars containing “suspicious characters” were being searched, and that for law-abiding citizens, the stop was no more inconvenient than a traffic light. A side issue is the fact that public funds are being used to finance the blockades.

Judge Willis took the case under submission.

Suggested reading: In Defense of American Liberties: A History of the ACLU

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Kim Cooper

Kim Cooper is the creator of 1947project, the crime-a-day time travel blog that spawned Esotouric’s popular crime bus tours, including The Real Black Dahlia. She is the author of The Kept Girl, the acclaimed historical mystery starring the young Raymond Chandler and the real-life Philip Marlowe, and of The Raymond Chandler Map of Los Angeles. With husband Richard Schave, Kim curates the Salons and forensic science seminars of LAVA- The Los Angeles Visionaries Association. When the third generation Angeleno isn’t combing old newspapers for forgotten scandals, she is a passionate advocate for historic preservation of signage, vernacular architecture and writer’s homes. Kim was for many years the editrix of Scram, a journal of unpopular culture. Her books include Fall in Love For Life, Bubblegum Music is the Naked Truth, Lost in the Grooves and an oral history of Neutral Milk Hotel.

One thought on ““Crime Crusher” Blockade Status Studied By Court”

  1. Two Years of Peace Haven’t
    Healed the Wounds of War

    Masses Grope
    for Guidance
    Amid Ruins

    At this hour, two years
    ago, World War II was
    nearing its atomic finish.
    Hiroshima and Nagasaki
    lay dying. Allied forces
    stood at Japan’s door and
    delivered their final chal-
    lenge. In a few days—Aug.
    14 to be exact—Japan col-
    lapsed in the manner of
    Germany months before.

    + + +

    The Times runs a picture page, taking stock of changes since the end of the war. In Nijmegen, Holland, townspeople adopt the graves of men from the 101st and 82nd Airborne Divisions who died taking Nijmegen Bridge.

    In Essen, Germany, mothers struggle to feed their children one meal a day. At the current rate, it will take 130 years to rebuild Essen, The Times says. Elsewhere, women at the Dachau war trials hide their faces from news photographers.

    On Corregidor, the jungle is overgrowing military emplacements. “The rock-strewn tunnels still hold bones of Americans,â€Â The Times says.

    And then there’s Paris, where Christian Dior is unveiling what will become known as his “New Look,â€Â creating a terrible scandal not only because his creations use so much fabric—but because his model’s dress is unbuttoned to the waist, revealing a pink brassiere.

    “The audience of sophisticates—buyers and fashion writers, many from the United States—gasped. Unbelievers, they thought the mannequin had forgotten to button up. But she tossed her head and swung slowly around.”

    “The men like it, you know,â€Â a Dior saleswoman whispered to the dubious.


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