Militarization of Police

Another Isolated Incident

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Gwinnett County, Georgia:

[Georgia Bureau of Investigation] spokesman John Bankhead said state agents along with Gwinnett and Hall County police narcotics officers had been keeping watch over a drug suspect's home at 4237 DeJohns Way for about three weeks. Officers thought they saw the suspect enter the duplex around 2 p.m. Tuesday and moved to arrest him, Bankhead said.

A no-knock search warrant had already been obtained from a judge — allowing law enforcement to enter the suspect's home without knocking or announcing their presence — because the duplex was in a known gang area, Bankhead said. However, the agents and officers mistakenly forced entry into a duplex adjacent to the suspect's home.

No one was home at that unit, Bankhead said. The agents also banged on the door of the other unit in the same duplex, startling residents inside. Within minutes, Bankhead said the officers figured out that they were at the wrong building.

[…]

Jainet Rios, 25, a Home Depot supervisor, said she was at work when the officers came to her parents' home. She said her parents, her two sisters ages 18 and 19, and the 19-year-old's infant baby were terrified when drug investigators began yelling at them with their guns drawn. She said the incident especially shook up her mother, who suffers from bipolar disorder and was recently released from a psychiatric treatment facility.

It's the second wrong-door raid in Gwinnett County in two months.

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  1. Oh for fuck’s sake. It’s Friday, Radley.

    Man…

  2. They had been watching the place for three weeks and still kicked in the wrong door? Did they also have bowler caps and run around afterward hitting each other on the head with nightsticks too?

  3. This is a job for Bob Barr and friends. Georgia needs a watchdog group that demands each county and municipality review and adjust their “rules of engagement” for police arrests and raids.

  4. You’ve got me trained like Pavlov’s dogs, Radley.

    I’m starting to have physical reactions to seeing that headline.

    Must. Throw. Shit.

  5. They had been watching the place for three weeks and still kicked in the wrong door? Did they also have bowler caps and run around afterward hitting each other on the head with nightsticks too?

    I think they were running a high school science class demonstration on the difference between accuracy and precision.

  6. A no-knock search warrant had already been obtained… because the duplex was in a known gang area,

    Oh, cute. So, if you’re poor, the bill of rights doesn’t apply?

    -jcr

  7. I just read the headline. I have this to say:
    Goddamnit Balko!

    thank you

  8. So were they watching the wrong house for three weeks?

    Or were they not doing any watching and that was just a lie to get a warrant?

  9. Keystone Cops references would be more accurate if they weren’t also so dangerous.

  10. Glad I got out of Gwinnett while the gitting was good. In the real world, heads would be rolling for this crap, but I suspect the brotherhood will protect these idiots.

  11. Officers thought they saw the suspect enter the duplex

    So why not wait until he leaves to arrest him, if going after him in the house is so damn dangerous?

  12. OK read the post.
    Just the wrong door. No dead homeowner, no dead cop, no dead dog. And in the middle of the afternoon you say.

    I really really wish I lived in a country where I could afford to work up some outrage over this.

  13. Yea…but they acted in good faith.

    The arrest process just doesn’t work in America anymore.

    To much emphasis on the MACHO-CAMACHO approach. The arrest process of a drug dealer should not be the same as the arrest process of a mass murderer holding hostages at bay. The police do this just for SPORT … and not because of necessity.

  14. So why not wait until he leaves to arrest him, if going after him in the house is so damn dangerous?

    Because he might never come out! And you don’t know what sort of nefarious plots he could be concocting in there. You just don’t know! Are you going to give him the time he needs to outsmart us? Huh?

    Seriously, though, cops break down doors for the same reason anyone breaks anything. It’s satisfying and fun.

  15. You know, Alice, my mother’s always talking to me and trying to tell me how to live. But I don’t listen to her because my head is like a sieve. My father, he disowned me because I wear my sister’s clothes. He caught me in the bathroom with a pair of pantyhose.

  16. Epi,
    I’ve talked you and talked to you until I’m blue in the face! And now I’m done talking to you.

  17. Good, does that mean you’re done spitting on me too?

  18. Oh, thank goodness it was ONLY a wrong door raid.

    [rolls eyes]

    I wonder what the tolerable level of incompetence is in law enforcement. We’ve yet to reach that threashold, so I still have to wonder.

  19. It is the least bad story under that headline in a long while.

    Three weeks, and they got the wrong door? After seeing the suspect enter the right door?

  20. I swear! Pizza Delivery Guys have less wrong addreses than the cops. I mean, cant they harness the great power of mapquest, or are they to stupid to know how!

  21. “Pizza Delivery Guys have less wrong addreses than the cops.”

    That’s why pizza delivery guys are pizza delivery guys and cops are cops.

  22. To much emphasis on the MACHO-CAMACHO approach. The arrest process of a drug dealer should not be the same as the arrest process of a mass murderer holding hostages at bay. The police do this just for SPORT … and not because of necessity.

    Because what if the evidence was flushed down to toilet? In a sense they are a mass murderer because the drugs can kill many users, or turn them into soulless drug users, which is against GOD.

  23. My mailman gets the address wrong about as often as the SWAT guys – maybe its a govt thing. I’ll let you know when my mailman shoots my dog.

  24. Three weeks, and they got the wrong door? After seeing the suspect enter the right door?

    I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if what they saw was someone black entering the unit they actually broke into. “Someone black” = “the suspect,” no?

  25. I swear! Pizza Delivery Guys have less wrong addreses than the cops. I mean, cant they harness the great power of mapquest, or are they to stupid to know how!

    SpongPaul, I think your on something, I mean on to something. The cops should bring a stoned pizza dude navigator for every raid. If they get the wrong house, you get a free pizza.

  26. The police did announce they eventually caught someone with some drugs. So I guess that justifies their terror campaign. Assholes

  27. In other news, people are imperfect.

  28. …which is against GOD.

    Whoa! Juanita talks to GOD!

  29. Wait I missed that.

    So the WATCHED HIM ENTER THE HOME and still managed to RAID THE WRONG BUILDING ENTIRELY?!?!?!?!

    Wow, that’s an amazing level incompetence.

  30. Only because H&R won’t get that filter working.

  31. Oh, cute. So, if you’re poor, the bill of rights doesn’t apply?

    Replace “poor” with “non-upper-middle-class, non-white”. I had a casual conversation with a cop the other week and they have an absolutely terrifying worldview.

  32. I had a casual conversation with a cop the other week and they have an absolutely terrifying worldview.

    Please elaborate. I find cop thoughts to be horrifyingly fascinating.

  33. Another girl in my office is marrying a cadet this year. I asked him about Kathryn Johnston at a work function (party foul, I know) and he said, “Well they found drugs on her.”

    Poor girl.

  34. SpongePaul, they probably did use MapQuest. Has it ever been right? Somebody get these cops a pocket Constitution and a AAA TripTik.

  35. Watch out for Episiarch, Alice.

    He’s SO psycho. SO psycho. So very psycho.

  36. “Pizza Delivery Guys have less wrong addreses than the cops.”

    But Pizza is even DEADLIER than COPS! This is NOT HYPERBOLE!!!

  37. Juanita, my internet love.

    God talk not in conjunction with a J sub D triggered orgasm is a real turnoff. Of course I forgive you.

    If you try to reach inside of your heart
    you can find forgiveness, or at least the start
    And from that place where you can forgive
    is where Hope, and Love, also thrive and live

    And with each step that you try to take
    and with that chance that your heart might break
    Comes so much happiness, and so much strength
    which Alone can carry you a fantastic length

    For hate and anger will not get you there
    and though you say that you just don’t care
    You can EASILY avoid the pain on which hate feeds
    . . . the kind of hurt that No one needs

    Just make the move, take that first stride
    let go of the thing known as “Foolish Pride”
    Maybe then you can start to repair the past
    into something strong, that will mend, and last!

  38. pizza delivery guy has his own problems. if he shows up at the wrong door around dinnertime, whoever’s on the other side might impulsively buy the pizza. this doesn’t make the first, real customer very happy.

    an eon ago, i practiced law in a coastal california county. one county north of mine, a family owned a ranch. this family was generally known to be as law-abiding, straight-up, rock-ribbed republican as you can get. then came the drug raid, based on false information. for eight hours, they were handcuffed at gunpoint while the agents searched the ranch. the family sued. my favorite vignette from the case was a pretrial motion by the defense to exclude some testimony, and this was the testimony they were trying to exclude…..

    the family had a large deer statue outside their house. one of the agents had spent several minutes in the family’s sight, pantomiming a sex act on the deer. the defense contended that this would be too prejudicial for the jury to hear. good times…

  39. Another girl in my office is marrying a cadet this year. I asked him about Kathryn Johnston at a work function (party foul, I know) and he said, “Well they found drugs on her.”

    ‘Tis a shame that I, with my foul mouth and cornucopia of outrage wasn’t present.

  40. Hey Radley, cops are boring. Why not take on malpractice events so you can help us conclude that medical professionals live by a code of conduct that endangers our very lives? Too mundane? Not alarmist enough? Requires too much nuance or too feeble a platform for judgment? How about negligent parents so you can help us conclude that parents live by a code of conduct that endangers the very lives of the snotty little brats they bring into this world? How about incidents of friendly fire to throw light on the rage of the soldier? Come on, there are so many fields that your paranoia and fear-mongering can be pointed at. You’re using Reason as a stepping stone to the NY Times, aren’t you?

  41. Hey Andrew, I think this may be the wrong site for you.

  42. That is seriously out of whack…what happened? Why did they kick down the wrong door?

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