Monday, June 22, 2009

I'm going to have to call Sheriff Michael Jackson a disgrace

to that badge he wears.
The Prince George's County sheriff's office has concluded that deputies did nothing wrong when they charged into the home of the mayor of Berwyn Heights during a drug investigation last summer and fatally shot his family's two dogs.

The findings of the internal review "are consistent with what I've felt all along: My deputies did their job to the fullest extent of their abilities," Sheriff Michael Jackson said at a news conference
.
Yup. And how much you want to bet, if one of those shots had killed or crippled one of the people in that house, Sheriff Jackson would be trying to blame them for it? And saying the same damn excuses?
"It's outrageous," he said. "Not only is he not admitting any wrongdoing, but he's saying this went down the way it was supposed to and he's actually commending his police officers for what they did."
Because breaking into a house for no good reason and killing dogs is apparently excusable as 'part of the job'.
Members of the SWAT team killed Calvo's black Labrador retrievers after deputies broke down his door and raided his home in search of a drug-filled package that had been addressed to Calvo's wife.

Law enforcement officials have since acknowledged that Calvo and his wife, Trinity Tomsic, were victims of a smuggling scheme that used a FedEx driver to ship drugs. They said the couple knew nothing about the box. County police, who were leading the drug investigation, have said they were unaware it was the mayor's house
.
Two things: one, this is a raid that should never have happened. Two, that "We didn't know it was the mayor's house!" is interesting; like if it was, they'd have done it differently for a politician that for some stupid citizen without 'official' standing?
In an interview, Jackson reiterated his explanation that a scream by Calvo's mother-in-law, Georgia Porter, who saw officers in SWAT gear running toward the house, justified the shooting.

Porter "corroborated that she did scream out 'SWAT.' She admitted to that, and [Calvo] admitted to hearing that upstairs in the house," Jackson said. "That threw out the procedure of knocking and announcing, because now [officers were] compromised."

Three: notice how they keep saying 'admitted', like they were admitting guilt for something? Four, yeah, that sure justifies shooting the dogs, doesn't it? "...knocking and announcing..." my ass.

As I recall, at first they denied that the one dog was running away; now?
One dog was shot four times by the front door. Calvo has said his younger dog was running away from officers when it was shot twice, including once in a hind leg. Jackson said deputies thought the dog was running toward another deputy in the home.
Awww, isn't that a convenient excuse?
"I'm sorry for the loss of their family pets," Jackson said. "But this is the unfortunate result of the scourge of drugs in our community. Lost in this whole incident was the criminal element. . . . In the sense that we kept these drugs from reaching our streets, this operation was a success."
Not sorry apparently for an unnecessary raid that could have gotten innocent people killed, not sorry for scaring hell out of everybody but "this operation was a success." Except that they could have knocked on the damned door and acted like peace officers instead of strapping on their ninja gear and getting to shoot someone's dogs.

No, I'm not feeling charitable. I'm sick of LE officials excusing bullcrap actions because "They were following procedure" or "They thought the dogs were a threat" and all the other crap used to prevent the officers involved from facing any real penalty for what they do.

13 comments:

Fire said...

Fuck them and any other dog hating bastard out there!

Sailorcurt said...

Porter "corroborated that she did scream out 'SWAT.' She admitted to that, and [Calvo] admitted to hearing that upstairs in the house," Jackson said. "That threw out the procedure of knocking and announcing, because now [officers were] compromised."

I'm confused...if they were going to knock and announce, how were they compromised? Because the occupants knew they were out there a minute or so before they would have otherwise?

I know what they really mean...they were going to "knock and announce" just like we see on "Cops" every day:

The first cop knocks and shouts "Police - Search Warrant" as the second cop is swinging the battering ram at the door.

The occupants get approximately 1/2 second to hear the knock and announce, process the information, get to the door and open it before the cops break it down and storm the place.

Of course, then they testify that they knocked and announced for "20 seconds" like they did at the Frederick Trial.

I understand that cops have to do a tough job under tough circumstances and I've got nothing against them...but they are human and they will lie just as quickly to cover their asses as the next guy.

And when that lie happens to be at the expense of a law abiding citizen...well...sorry about that.

I hope the Mayor pursues this to the fullest extent possible...but I have no misconceptions that it will change anything for those of us who aren't referred to as "Mr. Mayor" in our daily lives.

The only solution to this is to end the war on some drugs.

We've lost that one. Let's withdraw from the field of battle with some semblance of honor while we still have the chance.

Mattexian said...

Shit like this is gonna get some SWAT ninja shot one day, because the homeowners who are innocent are gonna feel justified in shooting ANY intruder at night, even if they are screaming "Police!" when they kick in the doors. (Which, BTW, is becoming an MO of home-invaders who get their inspiration from one too many COPS shows. Thankfully, there's some homeowners who'll shout "Bullshit!" back at them and start shooting!)

the pistolero said...

But, but, but...drugs'r'baaaaaad, hmmmmkay?

Fire said...

Drugs are bad, Pistolero...how about a dealer waits at the corner and asks your nephew if he's wantin' to score some meth? And then you wanna go all crazy on the dealer for it...and he says, "But, dude, your nephew wanted it, don't hate, see what I'm sayin', yo?"

I am laughing like crazy right now.

I tell you what's bad: KILLING DOGS! Somebody starts shooting at my dogs, CSI's are gonna have a hell of a time cleaning up the mess.

the pistolero said...

how about a dealer waits at the corner and asks your nephew if he's wantin' to score some meth?
Well, of course that should be against the law for the same reason we don't sell minors booze and cigs. But yeah, I am laughin' too..."it's legal, maaaan..."

I tell you what's bad: KILLING DOGS!
Indeed. But as long as things are the way they are vis-a-vis the War On Some Drugs, it will continue to happen.

Fire said...

And that is just 10 kinds of wrong. I just HAD to go there. That was hilarious when it happened!

Sailorcurt said...

Shit like this is gonna get some SWAT ninja shot one day, because the homeowners who are innocent are gonna feel justified in shooting ANY intruder at night, even if they are screaming "Police!" when they kick in the doors.

That's exactly what happened to Cory Maye and Ryan Frederick. Ninja cops broke down their doors in the night, they defended their homes and, in the process, killed one of the cops...and now they're both in prison.

Cory Maye got the worst of it. He got sentenced to death...commuted to life in Prison.

Frederick wasn't blameless...he admitted to growing pot for personal use, but he wasn't the big bad drug dealer they accused him of being. He "only" got 7 years.

Of course, Cory Maye is black and killed a white cop...in Mississippi. Go figure.

how about a dealer waits at the corner and asks your nephew if he's wantin' to score some meth?

If my brother and sister-in-law are doing their job, that's not even an issue. He'll say "no" and keep on walkin'. Not the .gov's business or responsibility.

And that's not even considering that if it weren't illegal, they wouldn't be pushing it from street corners any more anyway, they'd be selling it from legitimate, tax paying businesses. How many times you get asked if you'd like to buy a pint of Jack on a street corner?

The crime and violence associated with the drug trade are primarily a direct result of it being illegal...not the substances themselves.

And if we stopped spending billions of dollars every year on breaking down people's doors and shooting their dogs, maybe we could afford more treatment options and get some help to people who want it.

Sailorcurt said...

BTW: My dogs are family to me. I'll defend them with all the vigor and violence that I'd defend any other member of my family.

Period.

Firehand said...

I wonder if some of these clowns realize just how bad that part of it deeply pisses people off?

And yeah, someday one of the clowns is going to kill the dog of someone for whom it's their only family remaining, and it's going to get messy. And they'll be really bent out of shape that someone would get that upset over having their dog killed 'by mistake, but following procedures'.

Windy Wilson said...

"I'm sorry for the loss of their family pets," Jackson said. "But this is the unfortunate result of the scourge of _____." Fill in the blank -- feel free, it can be anything, really, "drugs", "Reds", "Nazis", "terrorists", "limited-government hating freedom-lovers" -- anything, really, because they believe that their word is law, and the peons' job is to obey.

Windy Wilson said...

And as for the mother screaming, if one wants to, one can make anything bad. He showed too much reaction, he must be guilty, he showed too little reaction, he must be guilty, his face flushed, he must be guilty, his face blanched, he must be guilty.
Besides, didn't she scream after the SWAT made their move? Their surprise was not even blown by 60 seconds.

Sailorcurt said...

I wonder if some of these clowns realize just how bad that part of it deeply pisses people off?

I really don't think they do...and it makes me shake my head in wonder.

How many times have you heard cops push for "assaulting a Police officer" charges for someone who kicks a Police K-9, or murder charges if they kill one?

What would possibly possess them to think that we mere citizens would value the lives and safety of our own companions any less?

I guess because they get away with it most of the time. The vast majority of the people are not prepared nor do they have the mindset to defend themselves, let alone their four legged family members.

The odds of the cops running up against someone like you or me in a police raid gone awry are pretty slim.

And, as alluded to in the post and my first comment, few of us have the political pull that the title of "Mr. Mayor" commands and that would enable us to actually do anything about it after it's all over and our beloved family members are already dead.