Drug Policy

Another Isolated Incident

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Last Thursday, narcotics cops in Troy, New York shot the locks off a door, tossed a flash grenade through a window, and stormed a house as part of an early-morning drug raid.  They found only a single mother inside, not the drugs or weapons described in the warrant.  The raid seems to have stemmed from a bad tip from a confidential informant.  But Troy authorities don't seem particularly repentant.  Here's District Attorney Richard McNally:

"The checks and balances were in place. We checked and double-checked the information in this case. All the checks and double-checks were done. Unfortunately, it didn't work as planned."

Obviously the checks and balances weren't in place, or the police wouldn't have terrorized an innocent woman (fortunately, her five-year-old daughter wasn't home at the time).

One local TV reporter spoke with a police sergeant related to the case, who said the police have no intention of repairing the damage they did to the woman's home.

Sgt. Dean: "We did not hit the wrong house, we hit the house that the search warrant directed us to hit."

Anya: "But was that information that led up to that right?"

Sgt. Dean: "My bosses are going through this whole investigative process to make sure that we were as thorough as possible."

Anya: "What was the level of threat that you assessed prior to coming into the home?"

Sgt. Dean: "That there were weapons in the house, or that the drugs were stored in that manor."

Anya: "In this house, you found no drugs?" Sgt. Dean: "We are not publicly speaking on that issue at this point."

Anya: "Do you think this will hurt your credibility?"

Sgt. Dean: "The last thing we want to do is enter an innocent person's home—it doesn't get us anywhere, and it doesn't hamper the drug trade."

Anya: "Will you be going back to clean-up the damage to the house?"

Sgt. Dean: "We just have to enter lawfully with our search warrant, that is our only obligation."

Anya: "And you can leave it in any state that you left it?"

Sgt. Dean: "Yes. We had probable cause that led us to believe there was drug activity."

Which apparently means they feel no obligation to clean up the mess they made.