This is my racist cop story. Where I got pulled over because of my mother's expired tags. I was profiled, searched, and had my car locked and plates confiscated. I did not join the long list of minorities being killed or physically harmed by police. But the fact is, are we training police to handle situations professionally and with intent to serve the people? Or are we letting them cover boredom, abuse of power, and racism under the guise of public safety and 'protocol'? I'm wasn't and still am not safe from this ridiculousness, be it from the LCSD, FBI, or the TSA. I'm 20 years old and love my native country with a burning passion, but police consider me a outsider and a threat because of my slight tan. Not all brown people are Muslims, Indian IT-specialists, 711 storekeepers, or hispanics. And not all Muslims are extremists. And not all college students consume drugs.

I wrote this letter as an exercise for an English course. But beneath this polite and politically correct prose, I want you to see how I've grown tired of this, I'm sorry, bullshit. My best friends are black and well (I'm not sure yet we're still talking <3 ) girlfriend are all black. And even though its hard for me, I can't begin to image the decades their parents have dealt with, and how the deaths of their peers make the news only when the media feels they can make a good story.

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Why are we surprised when these things happen? Can we truly call our police forces the most well trained and civilized in the world when they continue with this behavior. Europe is laughing at us.

April 21, 2014

Loudoun County Sheriff's Department

25216 Loudoun County Parkway

Chantilly, Virginia 20152

To Whom It May Concern:

In late November, I headed down Route 7 to visit my friends at Regal Theatre and see a movie with them, around 9PM. I was driving my mom's car, since I do not own one. Shortly before I was going to arrive, I was pulled over by a Loudoun Sherriff who had been following me since I had passed through Drainesville and Sterling. The officer approached the window, and as I rolled it down, he only asked me if I had weapons, guns, or drugs. He repeated the question and then asked for my license and registration. My wallet had fallen into the crack between the driver's seat and the center console of the car. Not being able to find it, I assumed that it was missing, and he told me I'd receive a ticket for not having my license on hand. The officer did not introduce himself or ask me to ask him why I had been pulled over. He told me that my tax tags were expired, and that I had to exit the vehicle and that they'd have to search my vehicle. I told him that it was a family vehicle and I was not the legal owner, but he issued me a ticket nonetheless. I stood outside in my t-shirt, in the frigid cold, as he and another officer who he had dispatched searched my vehicle, not to mention, without my consent. He told me that my vehicle could not be driven from where it sat, and he and the other officer removed my plates, and told me I could not drive it anymore and that the plates were confiscated evidence. I asked if I could drive the vehicle into the parking lot, but he simply informed me that he had already called a wrecker, which pulled in shortly after he had said this. After paying the wrecker $350 dollars to move the vehicle 10 feet into the parking lot, I had to walk to the theatre in the cold from that intersection. Needless to say, I feel discriminated against. I am a young man with Indian ancestry, and I do not think it is far-fetched to assume that he profiled me. The police officer who directed the traffic stop failed to introduce himself, ask me to search my vehicle, or allow me the courtesy of calling my own wrecker. I feel like this is poor police work, and I don't deserve the points put on my license because of skewed procedure. I feel that no young man should have to go through that same situation, and I believe that the your officers should be trained to be more conscious of their tone and behavior when addressing people they pull over. I am not a drug dealer, and yet the first words I heard out of the deputy's mouth were, "Do you have any drugs or guns?" I don't like my identity being associated with crime; I shouldn't have to be afraid when driving in Loudoun County.

I can be reached via my cell phone at NOPENOPENOPENOPENOTONOPPO

Thank you for taking the time to read this,

Sincerely,

(signature)

Joshua Gilbert