DARE Involved in Controversial Arrest of Child

A Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) police officer was involved in the handcuffed arrest of an 11-year-old child at his elementary school in Joplin, Missouri.

DARE is known for its zero tolerance, hard-fisted approach to alcohol and drug enforcement. It also encourages “snitching” by children against each other, their parents and others.

However, this arrest appears to have been completely unrelated to alcohol or drugs. Instead, the child who was arrested had been involved in a confrontation with the son of one of the arresting officers.

In making their arrest of the elementary school youngster, the officers violated several Police Department rules and procedures. The FBI is now investigating whether the officers committed a civil rights violation in their action.

This, along with the arrest of other DARE officers across the country on child abuse/molestation and other serious charges, does not reflect well on the controversial and ineffective program.


  • Wells, Jeff. FBI probing arrest of boy: Investigating to determine if civil rights were violated. Joplin Globe, June 14, 2005.