Militarization of Police

A Correction to My Coverage of the Chesapeake Raid

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This morning, I drove down to Chesapeake to do some reporting on the drug raid in which Det. Jarrod Shivers was shot and killed while serving a drug warrant on Ryan Frederick.

I spoke with friends, co-workers, and neighbors of Frederick, as well as some people around Chesapeake. Lots of interesting stuff came out. I'll have more on my trip in a bit, but first I need to make a correction.

In this post, I wrote that the police at one point said Det. Jarrod Shivers was crawling through Ryan Frederick's lower door panel when he was shot. In this one, I referred to that same scenario as if it were undisputed. Actually, exactly where Shivers was when he was shot is a major point of contention right now. Reader Loren Collins emailed me on Friday to say he couldn't find in any coverage of the raid where the police, city, or prosecutor say Shivers was coming through the panel when he was shot. Looking back, I can't either. It's mentioned several times in comments threads, both at Hit & Run and at the Virginian-Pilot. But it hasn't been reported by any local media.

The unlikely "crawling through the door" scenario seems to be a twisted version of events culled from Ryan Frederick's jailhouse interview, in which he said someone was pushing through one of the lower door panels when he fired his gun. That seems to be consistent with the fact that police left a battering ram at the scene. I also spoke with a neighbor of Frederick's today who told me the lower panels to Frederick's door were indeed broken in (the police confiscated the door shortly after the raid).

But it was incorrect for me to attribute that account of events to the police or city officials. Moreover, even Frederick's account of events didn't identify the officer coming through the panel as Shivers, nor did he describe that officer as "crawling"—he said they were "pushing through" the panels.

I don't think this really effects affects the debate over Frederick's justification in shooting Shivers one way or the other. But I would like to correct my error.

So my apologies. I should have been more vigilant about double-checking an assumption that somehow crept into my understanding of the case before I reported it. In addition to this post, I'll add an addendum to both prior posts.

NEXT: The New Iraq War

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  1. Good Radley. It would reflect badly on the department if crawling through doors after smashing them were procedure. So you don’t want to spread that idea if it’s not true.

  2. I would like to correct my error.

    This guy flunks.

  3. That is, we will have zero tolerance for cops who try to correct their errors.

  4. You do a great job Mr Balko. Keep up the good work!

  5. Perhaps the officer is the one who used the battering ram and then turned sideways to get out of the way of ther others who were to go in, hence a bullet entering thru the underarm portion and missing the vest?

  6. Outstanding. Thank you for the correction. Wait, correction? Isn’t this a blog? The MSM says that blogs don’t pay attention to that sort of thing. Who knew?

    Well, anyway, you are doing good work.

  7. It very well may effect a debate.

    However, I think you meant to say that it shouldn’t affect the debate.

  8. Officer Balko, if you don’t start using the Memory Hole, we shall have to demote you.

    And then say it never happened.

  9. Good work, Radley. Nice to see someone around here get off their ass instead of just rehashing news that was released elsewhere.

  10. Excellent work, Radley! Thank you for your investigations!

  11. Radley, at least you are willing to admit errors or ommisions and the reasons they happened on your end. That is a far cry from the ass covering obfuscation we typically get from law enforcement in situations like these.

  12. Live and learn Radley; diligence and respectability are powerful weapons. Keep on kicking serious journalistic ass.

  13. Shouldn’t blood residue from the shot officer determine the location?

  14. Shouldn’t blood residue from the shot officer determine the location?

    and who has access to that evidence?

  15. The attorneys have access to all the evidence of the case. The general public does not get that information untill trial. Could you imagine how the stories would be twisted then. Ryan murdered someone he is not innocent.

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