Law Enforcement Against Prohibition

Law Enforcement Against Prohibition
27 Austin Road, Medford, MA 02155

[email protected] (781) 393-6985

LEAPBoard of Directors Jack A. Cole
Executive Director – Massachusetts

Peter Christ
Treasurer – New York

Edward Ellison
Director – The United Kingdom

John A. Gayder
Secretary – Ontario

Walter McKay
Director – Canada

Judge Eleanor Schockett
Director – Recruiting, Florida

Howard J. Wooldridge
Director – Media, Colorado

Advisory Board Hon. Larry Campbell
Mayor of Vancouver, British Colombia, Former Royal Canadian Mounted Police

Hon. Warren W. Eginton
Judge, US District Court, Connecticut

Hon. Gustavo de Greiff
Former Attorney General of Colombia, South America

Hon. Gary E. Johnson
Former Governor of the State of New Mexico

Hon. John L. Kane
Judge, US District Court, Colorado

Hon. Whitman Knapp
Judge, US District Court, New York

Sheriff Bill Masters
Sheriff, San Miguel County, CO

Dr. Joseph McNamara
Former Chief, San Jose PD, California

Mr. Patrick V. Murphy
Former Commissioner, NYPD, New York

Mr. Robert P. Owens
Former chief, Oxnard PD, California

Hon. Robert Sweet
Judge, US District Court, New York

Mr. Francis Wilkinson
Former Chief Constable, Gwent Police Force, South Wales, UK

About LEAP

After three decades of fueling the U.S. war on drugs with over half a trillion tax dollars and increasingly punitive policies, our court system is choked with ever-increasing prosecutions of nonviolent drug violations and our quadrupled prison population has made building prisons this nation\'s fastest growing industry. We have imprisoned more than 2.2 million of our citizens and every year we arrest an additional 1.6 million for nonviolent drug offenses—more per capita than any country in the world. The United States has 5 percent of the population of the world but 25 percent of the world’s prisoners. Despite all that, illicit drugs are cheaper, more potent, and easier to get than they were 30 years ago. Meanwhile people are still dying in our streets and drug barons continue to grow richer than ever before. This scenario must be the very definition of a failed policy.

Current and former members of law enforcement have recently created a new and important drug-policy reform group called LEAP. The membership of LEAP believe that to save lives and lower the rates of disease, crime and addiction, as well as to conserve tax dollars, we must end drug prohibition.

The stated U.S. drug policy goals of lessening the incidents of crime, drug addiction, juvenile drug use and stemming the flow of illegal drugs into this country have not been achieved. The failed policy of fighting a war on drugs has only magnified our problems but the U.S. still insists on continuing this war and also pressuring governments of other countries to perpetuate these unworkable policies. LEAP believes a system of regulation and control is more effective than one of prohibition.

LEAP is a tax exempt, international, nonprofit, educational entity based in the United States.

The mission of LEAP is (1) To educate the public, the media, and policy makers, to the failure of current drug policy by presenting a true picture of the history, causes and effects of drug abuse and the crimes related to drug prohibition; (2) To create a speakers bureau staffed with knowledgeable and articulate former drug-warriors who describe the impact of current drug policies on: police/community relations; the safety of law enforcement officers and suspects; police corruption and misconduct; and the financial and human costs associated with current drug policies; (3) To restore the public’s respect for law enforcement, which has been greatly diminished by its involvement in imposing drug prohibition; (4) To reduce the multitude of harms resulting from fighting the war on drugs and to lessen the incidence of death, disease, crime, and addiction by ultimately ending drug prohibition.

The idea of an organization made up of former drug warriors speaking out about the excesses and abuses of current drug policy and the utter failure of the war on drugs originated with Peter Christ, a retired police captain living in New York. Peter believed that an organization modeled after “Vietnam Veterans Against the War” would both catch the attention of the media and ring true to many other drug warriors who are questioning current U.S. drug policies. In 1998, Peter worked with Mark Greer, director of Drugsense, to create a secure email listserv restricted to current and former police officers interested in changing U.S. drug policy. It was called Drug Policy Forum for Law-Enforcement Officers (DPFLEO). Peter was