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Suit: Minn. drug training program violated rights

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 1, 2013 at 4:54 pm •  Published: February 1, 2013

It says authorities were instructed to target Occupy Minneapolis protesters who were exercising their First Amendment right to free speech, as well as those already addicted to illegal drugs. The lawsuit says participants weren't given a consent form and were not asked to supply their medical history.

The program "treated the human subjects as guinea pigs, if not worse," the lawsuit says.

The lawsuit seeks to keep the state and the State Patrol from running the program in the future, as well as damages in excess of $1 million.

The Drug Recognition Evaluators program started in Minnesota in 1991 and is managed by the State Patrol. After classroom training to learn about drug categories and physiology, officers must perform 15 evaluations on people who are impaired by drugs. These volunteer subjects are monitored and typically recruited from the community, DPS said.