Ankeny Cop Tries To Search Car Because ‘Everybody that Plays Frisbee Golf Smokes Weed’

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ANKENY, Iowa -- Ankeny's police chief is apologizing after a video surfaced showing an officer trying to search a motorist's car because, according to the officer, everyone who plays Frisbee golf smokes pot.

The video, which was taken by the motorist, starts with the officer giving that unknown motorist a warning about driving without headlights. Then the officer begins his interrogation. "You play frisbee golf?" the officer asks. "I do actually. I play out at Heritage (Park)"  the motorist replies. So the officer says, "OK. I need you to answer me a question. Why is it that everybody that plays Frisbee golf smokes weed?" "No, it's not everybody," the motorist insists. "It's everybody, man. You can't tell me you never smoked weed," the officer says. The motorist replies, "I'm not gonna tell you one way or another." So the officer says, "See, there you go. How much weed do you have in the car today?"

The driver tells the officer he doesn't have any marijuana. So the officer says, "You understand you're free to go and everything but you wouldn't have a problem with me looking through your car?" The motorist denies the request saying, "I actually would. Just because I have a disc golf bag doesn't mean that every disc golfer does have weed." The officer says, "So you have weed in the car then is what you're saying?" The motorist answers, "No I would say I have a problem with you searching my car because you're profiling me based on being a disc golfer."

Eventually, the officer lets the driver go.

Drake Law Professor Robert Rigg says the officer broke the law by trying to search the car during an equipment violation stop. "What the officer did after that was try to extend that stop into a general search of the defendant's car, or the individual's car. That's not permissible anymore," Rigg says, adding that if the driver had allowed the officer to search the car, and the officer found something illegal, chances are that evidence would be thrown out of court. "The Iowa Supreme Court has held that under the Iowa constitution you can't convert an equipment violation stop into a general search. and any consent that would have been given would have been invalid in any event."

The city of Ankeny did release a statement saying, in part, "The officer engages the driver in a line of questioning that is foolish and not representative of the Ankeny Police Dept.`s training or interactions with the public. This verbal exchange did not meet the level of professionalism expected of Ankeny police officers. Ankeny Police Chief Gary Mikulec respectfully apologizes for the officer`s demeaning statement."

As for the motorist, Rigg says, "I think the young man did exactly what he was supposed to do. He did not admit to smoking marijuana. He didn't answer that question at all and he has the right not to answer that question. And he has the right to say, look, if you want to ask me questions, why don't you call my lawyer."

97 comments

  • Jacob B.

    As an avid disc golfer I find it ridiculous that the nature of the game gets tarnished by abysmal people like the officer and others who stereotype those who enjoy the game with smoking marijuana. That’s like asking to search an professional athlete’s vehicle for alcohol because beer companies advertise during games.

    • Lb

      What could a union rep say to make what he did ok? I have taught my children if they are in trouble to find a cop. I moved to Ankeny and now I tell them if you want trouble find a cop.

  • Kam

    Fire him. That’s the kinda bs that gives cops a bad name. He’s on a power trip-probably speeds & doesn’t use a turn signal.

      • King

        You’re completely wrong JF. KAM has every right to make that statement because people are entitled to there opinion. This cop acted on his prejudice. A cop that used his prejudice and acted irrationally should lose his job. How can you say these are remotely the same thing and this is what bothers you? Someone speaking there mind and probably being correct or a cop acting like a jag.

      • Conor

        Thing is, it doesn’t matter if I make generalizations, because I’m not using them to try to violate anyone’s rights.

  • Brandie Chumbley

    I’m just going to say it, it was probably Officer Brian Hook. He likes to belittle anyone he comes in contact with while on duty. Unless they are under age girls who are at heritage park drunk, he let’s them do a blow test just for fun. He has disrespected everyone I know that he has had interactions with.

  • DON BURNETT

    WHY DOES THE MEDIA THINK THIS IS A NEW STORY, BECAUSE THE OFFICER GOT CAUGHT BEING RECORDED; HAPPENS ALL THE TIME IN EVERY PLACE IN THE U.S., OFFICERS WANT A PAY GRADE RAISE, OR A PROMOTION FROM HIGHER RANKING OFFICER’S. IF YOU TRY HUNDREDS OF TIMES SOONER OR LATTER YOU’LL BY STATIC’S STUMBLE ONTO A LAW BEING BROKEN !

  • L.L.

    Oh come on, This Police Officer is an embarrassment to Law Enforcement everywhere and certainly a disappointment to the City of Ankeny. Turn him loose. His credible and his level of professionalism, or lack thereof, are not needed nor desired as a representative of Law Enforcement.

  • Lb

    Typical Ankeny cop. I have an apology from the chief using almost the same wording for the actions of an Ankeny cop with my teen. The citizens of Ankeny need to say enough. The police are making Ankeny look bad.

  • Violate the Constitution, lose your citizenship

    All would be gestapo can go live in the North Korea police state where they can fit in.

  • Brutally Honest

    This is not the first time this very cop has gone way beyond his authority during a traffic stop. I know a few people that have been stopped by this guy and they have had to call his supervisor out to the traffic stop and each time the supervisor sided with the person he pulled over. If you dont like how the cop is acting or feel he is out of line, tell him to get his supervisor on scene, he has to do it if you ask for the supervisor. Ankeny cops have a reputation of over stepping their boundaries and using excessive force, and that reputation is backed up by facts and a few vidoes.

  • Public Critic

    It is easy for the public to criticize police officers actions. But if they would have to deal with some of the shitheads we deal with on a daily bassis they wouldn’t last one hour.

    • iamjoespinkyfinger

      Maybe if you weren’t such a cowardly little shithead Mr. Cop, people wouldn;t treat you like one. Oh wait you aren’t a cop and that’s the fourth job you’ve claimed to have, keep your lies straight.

    • Andrew

      Police are thugs. We the people are supposed to be armed and protect ourselves. If you want to hire someone to protect your land or private business fine. But you socialist/fascist left wing and right wing nut jobs want to force your moral ideology on everyone instead of following this nations founding laws….anyone who supports police and military are thugs. (except our navy which is the only thing our taxes are to pay for by our constitution because we the people are to be armed and ready to fight and if you aren’t willing to die for your freedom and sacrifice freedom and liberty for security you deserve neither freedom nor liberty – Thomas Jefferson) I’m no party, for limited government as our constitution states…only thing government is supposed to do is fund our navy to protect our boarders from invasion (we are to fight if we go to war not have active hired thugs, you are stealing my money because you are cowards to defend yourselves) and enforce contracts between individuals whether it be a company or marriage or whatever..they are to just enforce the contract, and to pay off our debts in gold/silver…instead fascists/socialists want government to pass laws and write regulations and take away freedom from others so they can make money for their companies and push their moral agenda’s. This is fascism/socialism at it’s finest..might as well go back to calling our self England and follow the King and Queen because that’s exactly what we’ve reverted to.

    • Gary

      Just because you deal with shitheads officer, doesn’t give you or anyone else the right to violate their constitutional rights, does it??

  • Dean Thomas

    What was this police officer’s previous career? The obnoxious barker who guesses your age at Adventureland? And no, Kody, legalizing cannabis would make Iowa as stupid as Colorado…now home of the most dangerous impaired drivers in the midwest.

  • revraygreen (@revraygreen)

    from another persons comment “Disc Golfers may be known to smoke weed, but they actual clean up parks, make them a safer place for people to spend time, they stop gang members from hanging out there, they basically make the community a better place to live”

  • Luke

    I hope this cop gets the harshest penalty that a power-hungry cop who thinks he’s above the law has ever received: aka paid leave. Due to the fact that every single cop always gets a free pass for any sort of illegal and aggressive behavior, it is simply unsafe for any citizen to not fear cops or see them as an enemy, even though in ideal world we see them as our friends.

  • Sue

    Ok, did this officer act inappropriately? Yes, he did. His comments were rude and unfounded.
    Does that make ALL cops bad? No! Cops put their lives on the line EVERYDAY for d*ckheads like a lot of you that just want to sit in your basements and spew hate.

    There are bad cops out there, just like there are bad teachers, bad plumbers (dealing with one of those right now myself), bad auto mechanics, doctors, nurses, landscapers, walmart cashiers. The list goes on and on. EVERY type of job has both people that are good and people that are bad.

    To judge an entire profession off of one guy who made some inappropriate comments is ridiculous!! Why aren’t you judging cops by the officer the other day that was in the news….he pulled over a young woman who’s child was not in a car seat….rather than writing her a ticket she could not afford…he took her to a store and purchased her child a safety seat…out of HIS pocket! What a great guy, giving a woman who is down on her luck a break, and ensuring the safety of the child. He could have just given her the ticket, which is his job, and the child would still be riding around without a car seat the woman didn’t feel she could afford right then.

    What about the small town cop that gets called to a home for a ‘trespasser’. He knows that it is just the local widow who is lonely…her kids never come to see her. He has to follow up on the call of course. But, he doesn’t have to stay and visit for 10 minutes…giving the woman what she really wants, a little human interaction and compassion.

    If you always look for the negative, you will certainly find it. It is what the news stations deliver because it is what the public wants. Guess what, the positive is out there too!

    • discer

      What about the disc golfers that don’t smoke pot? This officer doesn’t give the same considerations you are trying to make a point out of Sue. If his reasoning were true than you might draw the conclusion that ALL cops like doughnuts.

    • Sue

      Discer – you are right, I am trying to say we shouldn’t assume everyone who has a similar interest is entirely the same sort of person. I assume there are many, probably most, disc goler’s that don’t smoke pot, probably don’t break the law at all. I am saying this cop was wrong to make the assumption that they are all ‘dopers’. I am ALSO saying that the bloggers here who are saying that ALL cops are bad, are just as wrong.

      Joe Stinky finger, your comment makes no sense at all. All I said was, basically, we shouldn’t judge an entire group of people by our interactions with a few. And, just so you know, there are more than one ‘Sue’ that post here.

      • Zac Fox

        Glad to see others on this comment board not spewing cop hatred. Let the police take a vacation for a couple weeks then we’ll see the same people that were whining and complaining about their rights whining and complaining that the cops aren’t around to protect them. Well put Sue! Wise up people!

      • Ryan

        The problem with your logic sue is that “good” officers go out of their way to protect the bad. More than any other profession, the blue shield ring a bell? Further their authority comes with a price–they can lock you in a cell and destroy your life. I don’t see many teachers with that power. Great way to compare apples and oranges I guess.

        If you truly want what you say, get more “good” officers to stop defending the thugs and enforcing the law on themselves.

    • Danno

      Cops don’t usually respond to d*ckheads spewing hate in their basement. If there is cause it usually comes from the FBI or secret service, and you can bet they have a warrant!!! By the way, why are you profiling widows?

  • Kenny

    Ankeny cops are a joke. They did this to a friend of mine not long ago. Ive seen them park on top of a center divider on Oralabor rd. The kind u actually have to pull up onto a curb and let ur tires straddle the curb on either side, trying to catch people doing “whatever”. If I were to park like that I would recieve a ticket in no time..and I’m sure be checked for drugs..cuz I’m parked like a donkey! You know..that would be all the probable cause they need. LET HARD WORKING PEOPLE ENJOY THEIR FREE TIME.

  • Ryan

    So glad the Altoona police are not like this. They’ve always been courteous and professional, and don’t seem to be out to harass citizens.

  • Eric Carter

    I also play disc golf and I can tell you that I don’t smoke weed. Things like this make me proud of living in Ankeny. So glad the police have nothing better to do then try to find a reason to write tickets or arrest people.

  • Zac Fox

    I’ve done ride-alongs with the Ankeny PD. Most are well educated, ex military with a solid background. You folks have no clue how hard their job is! So what if he’s trying to get a doper off the streets…. Isn’t that what we want for our kids and the Ankeny area? Walk a mile in their shoes before you judge or don’t judge at all!

    • discer

      He was trying to strip a citizen of his constitutional rights by using manipulative wording. Is that want you want for your kids and Ankeny?!?

      • Zac Fox

        What have YOU done to better society? I personally know the officer involved and he is aware that his actions weren’t inline with the APD standard. That being said, do you know how many people answer the officers questions and allow and search and usually have drugs on them? Answer: A LOT! Ankeny doesn’t have a drug problem due to these officers.

        The officer didn’t search his car (which would have been illegal), he merely asked to search the car. He didn’t violate anyone’s rights. He profiled, yes. But that being said, as a combat vet if I didn’t profile I would have gotten myself dead a long time ago. Profiling may be illegal but, it’s a necessity. Sorry bud, facts are facts.

    • Jay Middleton

      Zac Fox, you are obviously a fascist weasel. Nobody needs walk a mile in any cop’s shoes to observe that this cop is dirty. It’s these kinds of tactics by dirty cops that allow real criminals to walk free on unnecessary technicalities while the rest of society is expected to automatically bend over.

  • Josh Bethune

    Time for this to hit copblock.org. Another thug behind the badge abusing his powers. Glad the driver did not give in to this bully. Hope the cop is fired. The cop is a disgrace to America.

  • Warrior

    Wow. While I find it kind of funny it’s also ridiculous. I’ve played the game and find it absolutely fun. I see absolutely no correlation between disc golf and smoking weed. I’m the Marines and certainly don’t smoke weed. First, I don’t like it and second I’m subject to monthly random pee tests.

  • lifealert

    Well, the officer was in the wrong yes, the steriotype was uncalled for yes, but trolling the net and belittling your fellow citizens for having an opinion is right? No, t’is not. Its usually the person throwing the largest stones who make the smallest waves.

  • Randy Brown

    …most incredibly ignorant case of profiling I have ever heard of! I am a 58 year old disc golfer and I can assure you I am not a pot smoker. This guy demonstrates he lacks discernment and just common sense which ought to be a foundational requirement to be in law enforcement.

  • shawn

    To anyone out there who thinks it’s ok to search “just because”, you are the frog in the pan. It is against your constitutional rights, PERIOD!

  • TERRELL NEO

    MY ONLY ISSUE WITH THIS WHOLE STORY IS THAT THIS TYPE OF MESS HAVE BEEN HAPPENING FOR YEARS TO MINORITIES, BUT NOW THAT IT HAS HAPPENED TO A WHITE MAN ITS ALL OF A SUDDEN A BIG DEAL. RACIAL PROFILING IS OLD NEWS, ITS A SHAME THAT MINORITIES FIGHT FORR THIS COUNTRY THAT WILL NEVER FIGHT FOR THEM.

  • revraygreen (@revraygreen)

    I got stopped by a cop walking in Colorado Spings cause I didn’t use a cross-walk at intersection a block down. I emptied my pockets, no knives, guns or needles, just pot. Cop asked me “you like smoking weed?” seeing I had moved from IA when checking the system, I said “I like police that don’t take me to jail for weed and I will use the crosswalk from now on, sorry.”

  • revraygreen (@revraygreen)

    Years before there was frisbee golf, there was frisbee. Having a Wammo under the front seat was there for cleaning your weed,place for pipe,papers. These days the pot you get, has no seeds….100% of Ultimate Frisbee players have done acid and mushrooms……..at one time in their life..right cop? All cops under 50 take steroids, right ?

  • AnkenyResident

    Ankeny cops still think If your tongue is green you smoke weed.
    They use that myth still on drivers and passengers

  • Thomas Olson

    I just find it disturbing that 13% in the poll above think the cop in question “was just doing his job”. In other words, they think it’s perfectly OK for an officer to lie, cheat, act on personal prejudice, etc., rather than respect the rights of citizens and follow the Constitution. Avoid those people at all costs.

    • Ryan

      Exactly my thoughts when I saw that. They should be shipped off to north Korea, they seem to think that’s where they are anyway.

  • Sad

    I live in Ankeny and am a 54-WM. I grew my hair long and was polled over in Ankeny 11 times in 13 months and never received a ticket. But I did recieve similar questioning every time. I cut my hair short and have not been pulled over in 4 months. I am assuming Ankeny is taught to profile anyone driving in the city. So sad.

  • Tionico

    As soon as the cop said “you are free to go and all, but…..” I’d have said Good Day, then, officer”, rolled up the window and left. As far as the cop, this city would do well to fire him with prejudice, and make his record sho he is unfit for law enforcement service. That way the next county over, which might not read that town’s rag, will not hire him either.

  • ice

    ahhh, yes.. good ol’ Ankeny cops.. I remember them well. when I clicked on the article I KNEW it was going to be Ankeny. you’ll get pulled over in that town for anything! headlights is actually legit, but this cops’ actions/questioning are “spot on” with the rest of the department.

  • ice

    Ankeny cops.. they’ll have to change their ways soon with all these camera phones. I miss the days when I would drive through Ankeny, custom rims will get you “eyed up”

  • turryg

    lawsuit is the only way they learn. When city gets sued, insurance premiums go up, then they learn. They’re surgar coating everything so you don’t get a lawyer.

  • Elaine Hardy

    Yeah. “Everybody” that plays frisbee golf smokes weed.

    And every FOOL with a law enforcement badge makes a good bartender.

    So not to worry, Aaron. There’s a place for you in this community – pouring doubles and smelling like STALE BEER at the end of your shift.

  • Gary

    I have no doubt that this is not the first time this officer has pulled this stunt. But this is the first time he has been caught. Therefore, he should be fired. He is a liability to this community.

Comments are closed.