Thursday, August 07, 2008

And the latest SWAT dog-shooting raid just gets better

better and and better.
Prince George's County authorities did not have a "no-knock" warrant when they burst into the home of a mayor July 29, shooting and killing his two dogs -- contrary to what police said after the incident.
Well, isn't that just frikkin' wonderful?

A Prince George's police spokesman said last week that a Sheriff's Office SWAT team and county police narcotics officers were operating under such a warrant when they broke down the door of Berwyn Heights Mayor Cheye Calvo, shooting and killing his black Labrador retrievers.

But a review of the warrant indicates that police neither sought nor received permission from Circuit Court Judge Albert W. Northrup to enter without knocking. Northrup found probable cause to suspect that drugs might be in the house and granted police a standard search warrant.
So add either lying about the warrant, or not bothering to find out before speaking to the media.

Police spokesman Henry Tippett said yesterday that the statement about the warrant that public affairs officers released Friday was based on information provided by Maj. Mark Magaw, commander of the narcotics enforcement division. A request to interview Magaw was not immediately granted yesterday, and Tippett said he could not explain the discrepancy.
Wonder how long he'll be unavailable for interview?

Greenbelt Police Chief James R. Craze said yesterday that county officers contacted his 54-member department the day of the raid to ask whether his emergency response unit could serve the warrant. County police have said the Sheriff's Office was asked to participate because its team was busy at the time. Craze said it is not unusual for agencies to cooperate in such cases.

"From what I know, their SWAT team wasn't available, and that's why they were out shopping," he said
The obvious question here is why was a SWAT team needed in the first place?

Were Calvo or his wife, Trinity Tomsic, to be charged in the case, the issue of the search could come up if prosecutors tried to introduce the box of marijuana as evidence. More likely, experts said, the issue could form the basis of a civil rights lawsuit filed by the family against the county in the incident.
You think maybe?

Another issue that could arise in court is whether officers provided Calvo a copy of the warrant at the time of the raid, as required by law. Maloney said they did not, even though a detective signed a sworn statement to the judge indicating that he had. Instead, the detective brought the warrant to Calvo several days later, Maloney said.

Maloney said that Calvo and Tomsic are waiting for an explanation from law enforcement and that it would be premature discuss legal action
That's an awful lot of lying going on in this case, on top of the idiocy of a SWAT raid when a "Sir, we have a search warrant" would have done, and shooting the dogs, and so forth. If anything, the more information comes out, the less professional and less competent and less lawful this bunch sounds.


Anonymous said...

These violations of civil rights need to come to an end. A similar event happened to me. I was ushered from my home at gun point (three guns to be exact). My home was searched. I committed no crime, and I was never charged with any thing. When I publicly complained, I was told by the police that I should be quit or "bad things" will happen to me. Was that a death threat by the police?

Within the last month a man was tasered seven time, and he died at the hands of a police officer. The police tactics are out of line! A traffic stop is not suppose to be a life and death issue. One false move at a traffic stop and you are dead! What is going on? That is not acceptable conduct. That is conduct that I expect in Iraq not the United States.

I think it is time that people protest the excessive use of force by the police! Publicly send a message.

Vote For David said...

You don't understand guys, there is the remote possibility that a whole (little) BOX of EEEEEeeeeeEEEVIL PLANT RESIDUE could be flushed down the toilet! Don't you see? They HAD TO do a dynamic entry! HAD to! Killing a family pet and a child's bestest best friend EVER is FULLY JUSTIFIED by the need to preserve EVIDENCE!!!!!1!

This is why we need bars on our doors. To keep out dynamic entrants long enough to reach a suitable rifle. If the police want to pretend to be violent murdering thugs, they need to be prepared to lose a few of the "only ones" every once in a while.

Or are they also "more equal?" Now I'm all confused....