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At the local level, claims of victory are similarly suspect. New York’s crackdown on street dealers, which relies heavily on the sort of sting in which Patrick Dorismond died, was supposed to reduce homicides. It hasn’t.
The police are not even claiming that the operation has reduced drug consumption. Instead, they say it has driven drug sales indoors.
If that’s the goal, repealing prohibition would be a more effective approach. Not incidentally, it would also alleviate the disastrous side effects of the war on drugs, including black-market violence, official corruption, invasions of privacy, disrespect for the law, and the squandering of criminal justice resources.
After you consider the broader context of Patrick Dorismond’s fatal encounter with the police, it seems that the bystanders who witnessed the shooting were right in their initial impression: It was a senseless act of violence.