Salisbury State Reservation Police Ha...

Salisbury State Reservation Police Harassment

Posted in the Salisbury Forum

Lisa

Braintree, MA

#1 Jul 20, 2009
Recently, I had the dissatisfaction of camping at Salisbury State Reservation when my husband was verbally assaulted and harrassed by an officer having a "bad day". We have camped there for many years and have never had any issues (in fact, the state police officers were quite kind, friendly and helpful) until our encounter with this officer, whom we have never seen. My husband was on his way from our site to the boat ramp when he was pulled over by an officer. Riding in the boat, my husband was unaware that this was illegal) were my husbands brother and our son. My husband happened to be eating sunflower seeds and was removing a shell from his mouth as the officer approached the vehicle. He thought that he was respecting the officer by not spitting a mouthful of seeds at him. The officer approached while YELLING at my husband and accusing him of throwing something at him. My husband politely explained what it was and the officer demanded that he get out of the car and pick it up as he was "littering HIS campground".(pretty sure we're paid up on OUR taxes, as well, officer!) The officer then pointed into the faces of the two men with my husband and told them that because their friend (my husband) disrestpected him, that they were going to pay. The officer then asked if there was any alcohol on the boat and my husband answered honestly, "yes". In the cooler, unopened, were three cans of beer. The only infraction at this point, I believe was the people riding in the boat. The officer instructed one of the men to dump the 3 beers onto the ground (is this littering, as well?). I was unaware that there are laws against alcohol unopened in a car or boat. By the way, none of the gentleman had been drinking prior to this. The officer then paraded them around the campground and back to our site where he blocked the road to all traffic with his car and deeply embarrassed myself, my husband and our children as the entire campground looked on (it should be noted here that a boat attached to a car with a load of children in it passed by the main road at this time - happens all of the time there). The officer now began threatening to take my husband to jail if he lied to him and asked if there was any alcohol in our camper to which my husband replied honestly, "yes". He proceeded into the camper and gave the officer the rest of his case of beer (minus the 3 he had already taken). This was not good enough for the officer. Now he wanted to search our coolers which were lined up outside of the camper. His search revealed nothing but good old soda. Still not good enough... Now he wants to search our refrigerator inside the camper. My husband brings him in and opens the refrigerator - again, nothing!!! All the while, he is threatening us that he will take my husband to jail if he lies to him. He writes him a $50.00 ticket and says he is "cutting him a break". He comments on my husbands address on his license and says that he used to be out of the barracks close to where we live in the western part of the state. My husband says, "oh, our neighbor is out of those barracks, as well". Didn't his whole demeanor change when my husband said this??? He apologized to my husband and said he was having a bad day and he was hot and tired. Unbelievable!!! Has anyone had this crazy experience at Salisbury? We are SO incredibly disappointed with this experience - we are unsure as to whether we will return. Our tax dollars fund these state parks? How about they reserve the harsh treatment for the criminals, not the family men? Is it even legal to search someone's camper without a warrant?

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