A: Our KION Question is from Steve in Santa Cruz.
He asked us, "Do police get to keep drug money found? The reason I'm asking this is why do they get to keep the money when schools are hurting in our county and the money could be better spent there?"
Here's the answer from Zach Friend, of the Santa Cruz Police Department:
Police agencies can collect some money obtained through a very formal Asset Forfeiture process. This money can come from drug-related crimes. However, the amount collected, and frequency of collection, is generally overstated.
Once money goes through the formal process (which determines whether or not we are eligible for a portion of the funds) it is divided among various agencies (including county and federal).
It is placed into special accounts that are audited and closely monitored and can only be spent on limited things. In the last year we used our Asset Forfeiture funds to fund a joint program with City Schools for self-defense and awareness classes for children.