DJ Speedy Robbed By Oklahoma County Sheriff in Civil Forfeiture Case
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. — In December of 2018 internationally acclaimed “DJ Speedy” also known as Harvey Miller or “Gangsta Nerd” was stopped by Oklahoma County Sheriffs for an allegedly illegal lane change.
In what Miller described as racial profiling this low level alleged traffic violation escalated into a warrantless search that included a drug-detecting canine.
The search only unearthed the almost $150,000 that Miller was carrying with him as the legitimate earnings of a DJ, producer, and performing artist who has collaborated with world-renowned artists such as Nelly, Beyoncé, Outkast, and Young Jeezy — over the 25-year span of his career.
Miller was arrested and held in jail for 12 hours, while the county seized his cash for allegedly smelling like marijuana according to a press release by Miller’s staff. Arresting officers found no illegal substances or traces of illicit substances in the vehicle or on Miller.
This is a classic example of unconstitutional civil forfeiture laws sanctioning the warrantless search of persons stopped by police and seizure of assets from those accused of, but not charged with, a crime stripping them of the constitutional right of due process.
These cases are complicated by the fact that the seized assets are the defendants in civil cases with the owner of those assets left with an almost insurmountable burden of proof of legal procurement.
In a conversation with DJ Speedy (Miller) yesterday, he stated that he wouldn’t have spent time in jail for the lane change ticket had he allowed the sheriff to take his cash without protest.
“The police had been so used to being able to take advantage of people until it was me. I worked so hard to make that money.” …”it says right on there ‘This is legal tender’…”
Miller felt he was racially profiled by the arresting sheriffs who accused him of being a drug dealer. Miller also related that this incident has pushed him into the sphere of race and politics because he has been “branded as a criminal” even though he had “no drugs, no priors, nothing…”.
“It’s all fun and games, like take me to jail. It gets real when the cuffs come out…” said Miller, “…a human being is taking my life in his hands.”
After being taken to the jail Miller was then charged with the illegal procurement of his personal cash assets carried for the purpose of travel from Los Angeles to his home in Atlanta and his bond was set at $17,000. Miller believes we would not have been charged had he allowed sheriffs to take his cash without protest.
When the sheriff’s office was able to verify his identity they offered him a check for the $149,845 confiscated the next day but Miller declined. Miller has filed a civil suit against the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office for three million dollars for defamation of character and procurement of his cash by illegal means.
While the initial incident took place on December 13, 2018, Oklahoma County did not file their charges against Miller until the 8th of January 2019 according to Miller. Miller believes this was an attempt to intimidate him from continuing to pursue his civil case.
“I like to think before, during and after. Afterward, I thought, what’s the worst they can do. They have my cash, they have already done the worst. All I can do (at this point) is fight.” Said Miller. “They call me unapologetic but I don’t care. It’s no lie.”
Casey McLerran is the Literary Editor at the Black Wall Street Times. She is a Sooner State transplant from Forest Hills, NY. McLerran arrived in Oklahoma at the age of three shortly after gentrification displaced her and her family out of their home in New York. At first glance, many think they have McLerran figured out. To be frank, she’s a biracial American young woman that unapologetically embraces her half-African identity — a feminist-womanist she is. Her pen operates as her voice as well as her sword. Her accolades include the 2018 Rural Oklahoma Poetry Museum’s Oklahoma Poem Award, a business management degree, and her three beautiful children. Her objective with the Black Wall Street Times is to elevate and amplify the literary art of modern black American culture, pay tribute to African-American literary trailblazers, all while simultaneously linking and introducing children to the world of colorful American writers.