Utah Rave Update

StoptheDrugWar has an update on the Utah Rave bust. The promotors of the event are planning a lawsuit and insist they had the proper permits.

Fullmer disputed the sheriff's office statement that he lacked a permit. "They are saying I didn't have my permits, which is a flat-out lie," he said. "I'm not some kid; I'm a businessman and I've been doing these events for 10 years. We were in complete compliance with the requirements of Utah County."

The Utah County Sheriff's Office claimed that the event was not properly permitted because under county ordinance, events with more than 250 people must receive a permit from the county commission. But the sheriff's office was being intentionally misleading, said Fullmer. "The county law says you need the permit if you're going to have more than 250 people and the event is going to last more than 12 hours, but our event was not scheduled for more than 12 hours, therefore we did not need that permit."

Versus II had done everything required of it, said Fullmer. "We had a permit from the county health department, we had emergency medical technicians on scene, we hired security licensed through the state of Utah. By the way, six of those arrested were our security people. They had confiscated drugs from party-goers and the cops arrested them for drug possession for the drugs they confiscated!"

The ACLU has also become involved.

"We have a lot of problems with how that entire matter was handled. We are extremely concerned, especially about the excessive force issues, as well as about the apparent attack on free expression and free assembly" said Dani Eyer, executive director of the Utah American Civil Liberties Union. "We have received complaints and are gathering stories and are in internal discussions about how to proceed."

You can read the promoters' statement of events here. Jonathan Meader, director of Salt Lake City DanceSafe, weighs in as well.

Thehim at Daily Kos wonders if there is a connection between the raid and the "Straight Edge" movement of clean living, abstinence oriented young people in Utah in the late 90's. He also has links to several stories about corrupt cops.

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    Re: Utah Rave Update (none / 0) (#1)
    by Mreddieb on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:02:48 PM EST
    Set your calendars bact to 1984!

    Re: Utah Rave Update (none / 0) (#2)
    by scarshapedstar on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:02:48 PM EST
    Well, they were being mighty unruly. I mean, the nice SWAT team just asked them nicely to turn that godd*mn thing off before they took their f*cking a**es to jail, and suddenly they start shouting about their "permits" and "rights" and clearly the whole bunch had to be tasered.

    Re: Utah Rave Update (none / 0) (#3)
    by cpinva on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:02:48 PM EST
    hmmmm, i just wondered what one would do with an entire county, won in a lawsuit? would you have to feed, cloth and house all the employees? if this guy is right, the county best hope its liability insurance doesn't have an "incredibly stupid, moronic acts by public officials, acting under color of law" clause.

    Re: Utah Rave Update (none / 0) (#4)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:02:48 PM EST
    Thanks for the mention! I read that interview with the "Straight Edge" member, and when I read the part about wanting to be a cop, it freaked me out.

    Re: Utah Rave Update (none / 0) (#7)
    by Aaron on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:02:50 PM EST
    I watch the video, and I didn't see anyone resisting the police or even acting in and disorderly manner. It appeared the police themselves were the ones provoking these kids. Doubtless these officers were all Mormons and evangelical Christians who view such parties as violating the laws of God. I'd like to see Utah secede from the union and become a haven for right wing religious fundamentalists, we need to concentrate them in one place and keep an eye on them.