In a statement on Wednesday, the same day the story garnered national attention from the Washington Post, Longmont Police explained they decided it was best to end the searches because the letter to tenants doesn't make clear that searches are voluntary.
It was incorrectly reported that the police were conducting illegal searches. The source of this misinformation can be traced back to a letter that the Longmont Housing Authority sent to residents stating, “Please note that we will occasionally have K-9 units with LPD accompany us for purposes of training and compliance.
*Next asked the City of Longmont if they could point to inaccuracies in our reporting. A spokesperson said no.
The Longmont Public Safety Department informed the Housing Authority they would only assist them with this process with assurances that individual constitutional rights would be honored, with the purpose of making the residents of the facility feel safe, and sharing information about the Public Safety Department’s Angel Initiative (addiction treatment services).
Public Safety Leadership was made aware of the letter from the Longmont Housing Authority to the tenants of the Suites Tuesday afternoon. Given that the letter did not convey the conditions set forth by Longmont Public Safety, specifically those conditions related to protect an individual’s constitutional rights, leadership made the decision not to participate in this process.
There was never any intent or violation of constitutional rights. The police department has not arrested anyone or confiscated anyone’s property and has not conducted any searches without the consent of the individual, as related to this issue.
Like many police agencies across the country, Longmont Public Safety receives calls about possible illegal drug use almost daily. Each case is unique but the one constant is the understanding of constitutional rights. Longmont Police Officers are highly trained and understand case law as it relates to 4th Amendment Search and Seizure.