After Robert Jones’ son ended up on the Sherriff’s prolific offender list, deputies began harassing his family at all hours, issuing citations for bogus violations and not telling Robert. Then, when he didn’t appear for hearings that he was never told about, they arrested him five times.

Stop Pasco’s abusive “Predictive Policing” program

The Sheriff’s Office of Pasco County, Florida, harasses people in their own homes using a method they call “predictive policing.” Using a crude computer algorithm, the Sheriff’s Office creates a list of people they think are likely to commit crimes in the future. The program has unfolded like a dystopian nightmare for the Pasco County residents it has ensnared, who have been subjected to near-constant police surveillance and harassment.

Worse, the motivation of the program is more sinister than merely “fighting crime”: The Sheriff’s Office acknowledged that they want these “problem people” gone. Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco, the architect of the program, boasted that the goal was to predict which residents are likely to commit crimes and then “take them out.” In the words of a former Pasco County deputy, they were under orders to “[m]ake their lives miserable until they move or sue.”

But the Sheriff’s use of predictive policing is unconstitutional. The government cannot harass you in your home just because it has decided that you or someone you live with might someday do something wrong. That’s why Pasco residents have decided to challenge Pasco’s program, alongside the Institute for Justice, in court to affirm the basic principle that there is no such thing as “innocent until predicted guilty.”

How Your Donation Helps

  • Your contribution enables us to represent our clients at no cost to them—and to stand with them no matter how long their cases take. And when we win for our clients, we secure precedent that protects the rights of all Americans.
  • IJ receives no money from the government. Our work is powered by nearly 10,000 supporters across the country who believe in the Constitution and the ideals it enshrines. Over 80% of our funding comes from individuals like you.
  • There is no better investment for defending liberty than IJ. We have litigated more than 300 cases on behalf of more than 1,000 people and turned once obscure issues like civil forfeiture and eminent domain abuse into subjects of national outrage. And IJ is a good steward of donor money, having received Charity Navigator’s top rating 20 years in a row.