It's been a rough recent go for civil asset forfeiture as its biggest fanboy, Jefferson Beauregard Sessions, was unceremoniously scrubbed from the Justice Department stationery, and now a new Supreme Court case has strange bedfellows aligning from all sides of the judicial spectrum.
Yesterday, justices liberal and originalist heard the case of Tyson Timbs, an Indiana dum dum who sold some heroin to undercover cops & was sentenced to a year house arrest and 5 years probation.
That's all fine, but a *private* lawfirm scooped up his Land Rover that was seized during his arrest and sold it for 4 times what the maximum fine would be for the crime.
The issue whether or not civil asset forfeiture is abused as a cash grab by some police departments who take property from people *suspected* of committing crimes seems pretty much settled and condemned from the seasoned and salty Clarence Thomas to the newly minted beach week Kavanaugh and all the liberal ladies in between. The question now becomes to what degree these sticky fingered cop-pops also violate excessive fines under the 8th Amendment.
If the justices find the 14th Amendment application of the bill of rights to the states *includes* this potentially broadened definition, that could be very good news for people who've had their houses, cars and property stripped from them, oftentimes without due process. If there is concensus on a wider umbrella protecting people and their things this could be very bad news for law enforcement agencies whose departments have gotten rich policing for profit, and very good news for champions of liberty who have long condemned this unconstitutional overreach.