Cops: People In Their Own Homes Are In The Wrong Place At The Wrong Time Whenever A Cop Enters Unlawfully

from the dear-sirs-or-madams:-get-fucked dept

It's not a trend. It's disturbing, trend or no trend. It just is. You're the enemy, even when you're in your own home. That's the arguments cops are making for killing or maiming people who had no idea law enforcement officers had entered their residence.

Part of the problem is "no-knock" raids. Saying they need the element of surprise to ensure officer safety and prevent the destruction of evidence, cops are engaging in a hyper-aggressive form of warrant service that sacrifices officer safety on the altar of evidence preservation. There's no evidence no-knock raids are safer. In fact, many high-profile stories show the opposite: performing an armed home invasion can often result in an armed response. The residents don't know cops are entering their house violently. All they know is people with guns are suddenly in their home shouting threats. They respond appropriately.

This is a direct result of the militarization of police, aided greatly by the Defense Department's 1033 program, which encourages cops to partake of the military's surplus. The addition of military gear, tech, and vehicles has allowed cops to view themselves as combatants in a war zone, with everyone who isn't a cop a potential enemy.

Even when they don't have the explicit permission to enter a residence without knocking and announcing their presence, cops do it anyway. What are the odds anyone would find out? Whose testimony is going to stack up against that of sworn officers of the law?

"Wrong place, wrong time" is living in your own house when cops show up unexpectedly. And that's almost always how cops show up: unexpectedly. In Julian Betton's case, cops served a warrant by crashing through his front door unannounced and shooting at him 29 times (hitting him nine times) when he confronted the home invasion with a gun in his hands. The gun was at his side but it made no difference to officers who kept firing until they felt he no longer "posed a threat." Betton was paralyzed from the waist down and suffered numerous injuries to his internal organs.

What the task force failed to notice during its "dynamic entry" was Betton's security camera. The recorded footage flatly contradicted multiple officers' sworn testimony. They claimed they knocked and announced their presence before entering. The tape shows no knock, no hesitation, and not a single officer moving their lips to announce their presence. A total of nine seconds elapse between the officers' arrival and their entry into Betton's home.

Betton sued and won, but Officer David Belue of the Myrtle Beach PD appealed the stripping of his immunity, arguing that he had every right to shoot Betton, even if the officers' entry was illegal.

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals seems skeptical, to say the least. Belue's lawyer argued that the illegal entry was not an issue for this appeal, so the court didn't need to waste its time relitigating that aspect of the case. The Court disagreed, pointing out Betton likely had every reason to protect himself from armed intruders that did not identify themselves as cops and were wearing gear that made it much more difficult for Betton to clearly identify them as officers of the law.

To paraphrase the oral arguments concisely, this is what was said:

OFFICER BELUE'S LAWYER: Citizens have no right to defend themselves from armed intruders in their home.

COURT: What the actual fuck

The oral arguments should be listened to in their entirety to enjoy the thorough reaming of Belue's representation, who attempted to argue the particulars of the shooting do not matter. According to Officer Belue's lawyer, the only thing that matters is a cop's view of the situation. If a cop increases the chances of an armed response by performing an illegal entry, it's on the resident if they get shot at 29 times by officers for choosing to grab a weapon before confronting the intruders.

This argument upends the Castle Doctrine. The Fourth Amendment holds the home above all else when it comes to Fourth Amendment protections. Citizens are given wide latitude to defend their home from invaders -- and that includes those who might be carrying badges. Officers like Belue are arguing that law enforcement's invasion of a home tips the scale in favor of law enforcement, allowing them to do whatever they want without repercussion simply because of their profession.

This is wrong. But it's not the only time this perverse argument has been made.

On September 6, 2018, Dallas police officer Amber Guyger entered the wrong apartment and killed Botham Jean, the actual resident of the apartment Guyger thought was hers. Guyger may have made an honest mistake but it ended in the death of a person who responded like anyone would to an unexpected intruder: he got up off his couch and moved towards the front door. Guyger handled her own illegal entry by killing Jean within a few seconds of entering his apartment.

She claimed Jean ignored orders to show his hands. (This is disputed by neighbors' account of the shooting.) But why would he? He was in his own apartment and Guyger was the intruder. The threat was posed by Guyger. She walked into the wrong apartment and drew her gun when she spotted someone she didn't expect to be there. Jean responded to Guyger by trying to get her out of his apartment. For that completely explicable reaction, he was killed.

So, who has the right to defend themselves in a situation like this? Well, a witness for Officer Guyger claimed it's the person who entered the wrong apartment.

A Texas judge barred explosive testimony Wednesday by a lead investigator who said he believes fired Dallas police officer Amber Guyger did not commit a crime when she entered the wrong apartment and killed the unarmed black man inside.

The "lead investigator" was former Texas Ranger David Armstrong. His take on the Botham Jean shooting? Guyger had the right to defend herself against an intruder even as she intruded into someone else's residence.

On the witness stand, Armstrong disputed prosecutors’ argument that Jean was seated on his couch in front of the TV eating vanilla ice cream when Guyger shot him. Instead, Armstrong said Jean was 13 feet from the door and posed a “deadly threat” to Guyger.

Outside the presence of the jury, Armstrong said Guyger acted “reasonably” and that he does not believe she committed any crime.

Living in your own home turns you into a "deadly threat" the moment an officer enters a residence unannounced. That's what cops want the legal standard to be.

Fortunately, it isn't, at least for the most part. There's a lot of immunity being spread around carelessly (the Fourth's oral arguments include one judge saying with some irritation "we grant immunity to everyone") but it's still police officers who are the interlopers when it comes to situations like these. The Appeals Court doesn't sound like it will give Belue a pass on his decision to use bullets to handle a situation he made more dangerous by refusing to follow the specifications (knock and announce) of his search warrant. And Amber Guyger was found guilty of murder, albeit the variety that results in a 10-year sentence rather than life.

Make no mistake: law enforcement officers are just as willing as any of us to do whatever it takes to preserve their livelihoods. The problem is that -- unlike most of us -- they occasionally engage in unjustified killings. And yet, they still want people to believe these deaths are a response to threats posed by citizens minding their own business in their own homes, even when all evidence points to the officers being in the wrong. When we screw up at work, we inconvenience people. When cops screw up at work, people end up dead. The arguments are not just weak, they're inexcusable. We deserve better. But it seems unlikely we'll ever get what we deserve.

Filed Under: 4th amendment, castle doctrine, police, police shootings, shootings


Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread


  • identicon
    AnonyCog, 30 Oct 2019 @ 4:13pm

    That's because the slave patrol are considered to be a standing army of the City-State. The public has been brainwashed to believe otherwise by the media and the government

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      AnonyCog, 30 Oct 2019 @ 4:14pm

      Re:

      Standing Army def. A standing army, unlike a reserve army, is a permanent, often professional, army. It is composed of full-time soldiers and is not disbanded during times of peace.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Gary (profile), 30 Oct 2019 @ 4:27pm

        Re: Re:

        Well per British Common Law it is perfectly alright for the army to be stationed inside your home. And Common Law is the important law, right?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Bergman (profile), 31 Oct 2019 @ 2:30am

          Re: Re: Re:

          What does British common law have to do with US common law, besides a shared ancestry? US common law is what matters here.

          It always amuses me though, that Sov.Cits routinely reject court case law, even though case law and common law are synonymous -- and always have been.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Gary (profile), 31 Oct 2019 @ 5:41am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            According to the SodCits, "Common Law" is the true law. Unwritten because everyone just knows what is wrong or right. Or at least they know better than the real courts and setup "Common Law Courts" to prosecute enemies of the people....

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2019 @ 7:48am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              It would be educational for several of these sovcits to discuss their versions of common law. I suspect that there will be a direct correlation between the number of attendees and the number of different versions of the same "law".

              On a side note, I wonder if the witch burners of the pilgrim era in the new world used a form of common law to justify the murdering of innocent women? Oh ... and did common law also direct the methods to be used? I guess that was a time period most would like to forget, but forget at your peril as it will be repeated in some form or another.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          MikeOh Shark, 31 Oct 2019 @ 5:43am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Please see the US Third Amendment. Probably the least used and referenced of the Bill of Rights but applicable to your reference.

          No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 30 Oct 2019 @ 6:16pm

      Re:

      The Founding Fathers were leery of standing armies.

      "A standing military force, with an overgrown Executive will not long be safe companions to liberty...
      ...The means of defense against foreign danger, have been always the instruments of tyranny at home" -James Madison

      With the increasing militarization of the police it is being proven more so today.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        K`Tetch (profile), 30 Oct 2019 @ 6:29pm

        Re: Re:

        well, Madison thought himself a military expert, by virtue of his service.
        Which was taking the role of XO to his father, that his father bought for him, where he was kept from any sort of combat and left to do just admin work.
        Turned out, what Madison knew about the military was complete bullshit.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 30 Oct 2019 @ 7:50pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          You can't deny the military or militarization of police isn't being used to oppress the citizens. You must also admit Madison wasn't the only one that held the same opinion. Are you going to find fault with every signer to justify arming the police to wage war on the people?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Gary (profile), 30 Oct 2019 @ 8:08pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            K'Tech is accurate - sorry you don't like the facts as presented.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            K`Tetch (profile), 30 Oct 2019 @ 10:23pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            the militarization of the police is a 1970s on thing.
            the military is not - as far as i'm aware - oppressing the citizens (posse comitatus etc)

            so i can deny one, and the other is - funnily enough - pretty much along the lines of things Madison himself would have done.

            In many ways, Trump is the modern Madison - rich father, dodged war service thanks to his rich father, beat Clinton (a member of the previous government) to become President, felt he was an expert on the military [he wasn't], liked to refer to his own words and big-up his own statements by pretending to be other people (the federalist papers), got into wars that were needless and a mess through arrogance, massively expanded the military (thats right, the one you claim he hated) and hated spending on things good for citizens (such as the Bonus Bill) preferring to spend it on the military), opposition to some cabinet members (Gallatin), while the rest were incompetent or ineffectual meaning he rarely called on them, and almost never listened to them, preferring to listen to Gallatin like a Hannity/Guiliani/Miller; he tried tariffs to dominate trade and punish with the Embargo Act of 1807 (failure); oh, and cutting taxes.

            not quite the man you think of eh?

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2019 @ 12:06am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              And you're still arguing the merits of Madison and not the message.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2019 @ 7:52am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "the military is not - as far as i'm aware - oppressing the citizens"

              Unless you are attempting to enter the US at its southern border.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              dhess (profile), 4 Nov 2019 @ 4:24pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              the military is not - as far as i'm aware - oppressing the citizens (posse comitatus etc)

              If law enforcement is using military weapons not available to civilians, violating the 4th amendment and other civil rights, and enforcing order, a task for the military, rather than justice, a task for law enforcement, then law enforcement is military in disguise and violating the Posse Comitatus Act. Ask Randy Weaver or the Branch Davidians what they think.

              There is a reason the writers of the Constitution and Bill of Rights distinguished militia from select militia.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                nasch (profile), 4 Nov 2019 @ 6:38pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                enforcing order, a task for the military,

                Enforcing order within the US is absolutely not a task for the military.

                violating the Posse Comitatus Act.

                Since local police are not part of the Army or Air Force (regardless of your redefinition of the word "military"), they could not possibly violate the Posse Comitatus Act no matter how hard they tried.

                "Whoever, except in cases and under circumstances expressly authorized by the Constitution or Act of Congress, willfully uses any part of the Army or the Air Force as a posse comitatus or otherwise to execute the laws shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than two years, or both."

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • icon
                  Uriel-238 (profile), 4 Nov 2019 @ 7:25pm

                  Enforcing order

                  When I hear (read) enforcing order I think of speeding tickets, which (more or less) encourage people to obey traffic laws and drive predictably. That's a police job.

                  However, police terms that use order (e.g. restore order from chaos) tend to be situations in crisis, protests getting riotous, hostage/barricade situations and the like.

                  In those cases, we rely on specialized groups (SWAT or Riot Control). The former used to be a highly-trained fine-tuned unit that did nothing but, and bridged the gap between police and military work. The latter (Riot Control) has always errored on the militaristic / brutal side, treating the public like the enemy. It doesn't take much delving into US history of protests and riots to see our riot control was less about containment or deescalation and more about making those hooligans suffer.

                  These days, SWAT units are made of volunteers who took a couple extra weekends to play with bigger guns, and it shows when they don't consider where they miss-toss flashbangs or raid the wrong address based on the intel of an unreliable informant.

                  So I'd say within the US, enforcing order has been passed off to the lowest common denominator, and should not serve as an example of who should enforce order.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    bobob, 30 Oct 2019 @ 4:15pm

    Of course... The cops have a blank check to do anything they can weave a story around to shift "the truth" in their favor.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 30 Oct 2019 @ 4:45pm

    Well Amber and David are kind of correct. Non police officers are a terrible threat to police officers. They might not capitulate to the officers every whim. And some of them even have the audaicty to take legal action when officers do completely reasonable things: like shooting a non police officer multiple times.

    You are completely supposed to ignore the fact that it is by and large police officers who are drawing an 'us versus them' line.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    David, 30 Oct 2019 @ 4:49pm

    Perjury should automatically cancel qualified immunity.

    Qualified immunity is supposed to extend to law enforcement officers who consider themselves doing their job. Perjury makes clear that an officer does not consider themselves doing their job.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 30 Oct 2019 @ 6:37pm

      Re: Perjury should automatically cancel qualified immunity.

      Exactly so. If someone really believes that what they did was correct they will feel no need to lie about it, as their own actions will speak for themselves. Lying makes clear that even they know that what they did was wrong.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 30 Oct 2019 @ 6:43pm

      Re: Perjury should automatically cancel qualified immunity.

      They should also be added to the Brady list and therefor unhireable by any trusted police forces.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 30 Oct 2019 @ 5:15pm

    Lawyer : I draw a distinction between a lie and a falsehood....

    Judge : Oh, come on...

    Should have given up there, you're not going to win that one from that point.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      DB (profile), 30 Oct 2019 @ 7:50pm

      I draw a distinction between a lie and a falsehood....

      Yes, that was a statement that stood out for me as well.

      The lawyer had a tough case to argue. But I wonder if he really thought that statement was going to fly. Perhaps it sounded good in the middle of the night after putting in long hours trying to figure out how to spin the situation. Or perhaps that is his go-to statement when any client is caught in a lie, uhmm, falsehood. Except that in this case it was a signed report agreed upon by multiple officers that was later proven to made up.

      Once again I'm amazed at the audacity of police falsehoods. In the past I certainly would have believed the police claims were substantially correct. Video evidence that proves their claims wildly untruthful throws doubt on every police report.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        That One Guy (profile), 30 Oct 2019 @ 8:34pm

        Re: I draw a distinction between a lie and a falsehood....

        Once again I'm amazed at the audacity of police falsehoods.

        Unfortunately I'm not, as it's hardly surprising at all that someone used to getting away with lies wouldn't bother to put much work into them, or be very good at defending said lies when called out on them.

        Had the video not been around then it would have been the word of the victim vs multiple cops regarding what happened, and you don't need a crystal ball to see how well that would have worked out for the one without a badge. It's only the fact that there was video evidence that they missed that exposed their lies.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 30 Oct 2019 @ 5:18pm

    Cops need to go back to school. Don't let them be cops until they know a few elementary things about Americans. We are not giving them free passes anymore.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Gary (profile), 30 Oct 2019 @ 5:25pm

    Knock Knock

    No Knock warrants are a narrow exception to normal warrants due to the possibility of evidence being destroyed - Not to protect the cowardly pigs with their flashbangs and tac armor.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2019 @ 5:49am

      Re: Knock Knock

      No knock warrants are insane unless they are going up against a known guarded and heavily armed position (and even then there probably is a better way).

      Otherwise what are they stopping from being destroyed? A couple of baggies or pills that can be quickly flushed down a toilet? They definitely aren't getting a kilo brick flushed very quickly.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        nasch (profile), 31 Oct 2019 @ 9:11am

        Re: Re: Knock Knock

        No knock warrants are insane unless they are going up against a known guarded and heavily armed position (and even then there probably is a better way).

        The only reason I can think of for a no-knock warrant at all is to preserve evidence. Busting into a known armed and guarded building is a great way to get people killed. I guess police believe seizing some drugs is worth it. I would say just lay siege to the place, they have to come out eventually.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      bhull242 (profile), 31 Oct 2019 @ 9:36am

      Re: Knock Knock

      Was this even a no-knock warrant? The original story from police (which was proven to be false) was that they had knocked and announced their presence first. Why would you say that if you had been granted express permission not to do that?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 30 Oct 2019 @ 5:26pm

    Cops flat out LIE, LIE, LIE. That is their job to LIE. They will LIE to make you do what they want no matter the laws and your rights. They will LIE to protect themselves. So if they crash into your car, for example, it's YOUR fault!!! They will lie to protect others in their Thin Blue Line Gang.

    Even if/when they get caught in this big old LIES, rarely does anything happen to them. Of course, you may be DEAD or paralyzed, but they just don't care. So many innocent people are MURDERED by the police every year because of crap like this.

    The so-called WAR on drugs needs to end. So much crime from the POLICE because of it. It's not worth it. You can have no gun. Like the story of the guy sleeping in bed. The police bust down the guy's door, doing their thing like here, waking the guy up, half asleep, starting to situp, the police barge into his bedroom, think they see him reaching for something and shoot the guy DEAD. In the end, it was the WRONG HOUSE!!!!

    Why the F are we putting up with this crap. We have more people in jail than in any other country. We are supposed to be FREE here? There's to many police. What someone does to their own body, who cares!!! I have no desire to use drugs. Make it all legal. End this war. Reduce the number of police. Let all these so-called drug offenders out of jail. Stop murdering people and stealing money and other things from people that the criminal gang they currently are.

    We have so many DUMB police out there these days, they don't know or don'\t care about the most basic laws. Let's just end all of this crap. Most of the police should be in jail themselves!!!! If there were good police, there wouldn't be so many bad police. If you are covering up for the bad, that just makes you just as bad as them.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 30 Oct 2019 @ 6:51pm

    Yet another case of those delightful double standards...

    If anyone without a badge walked into someone's house unannounced and shot the person living there they would be on the hook for attempted murder, with the presence of video evidence(and I bet the police were real unhappy to realize they didn't find and confiscate that footage as 'evidence'...) making for one of if not the shortest trials in years/decades.

    Give the shooter a badge though and suddenly there's 'wiggle room', where attempted murder(if not successful murder) becomes almost trivial, nothing to get worked up over because the one shot was in the wrong place(their own house) at the wrong time(when a trigger-happy cop showed up), such that really it's their fault for getting shot/killed.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2019 @ 3:00am

      Re: Yet another case of those delightful double standards...

      (and I bet the police were real unhappy to realize they didn't find and confiscate that footage as 'evidence'...)

      A good reason to make sure you have multiple recordings of security videos. I was going to say stream one copy to a cloud service, but in a land of data caps......

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 30 Oct 2019 @ 7:45pm

    If no charges are laid against police throwing a flash-bang into a crib, then its no wonder they think they can argue anything the police do is "justified"

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 30 Oct 2019 @ 7:57pm

    "if they didn't think that it was important that they identify themselves - why did they lie about it"

    Yup, and now you're done. I know the lawyer is meant to be doing his best - but at some point, you just gotta give it up

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 30 Oct 2019 @ 9:50pm

    Techdirt, Thanks for the heads up with this story.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    icon
    urgentevisa (profile), 30 Oct 2019 @ 10:21pm

    I’m wondering if anyone has any up to date information on this. Thanks!
    I really like your writing style, excellent info, thank you for posting
    wwe.e-visa.lk

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Tin-Foil-Hat, 30 Oct 2019 @ 11:29pm

    Nope

    "This is a direct result of the militarization of police"

    It's a direct result of a police state. The militarization is part of the package. Who would have thought a complacent population that only complains when their guy isn't at the helm would lead to this?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 30 Oct 2019 @ 11:44pm

      Re: Nope

      I saw the new world order's first atrocious act live on tv when three of them blew the skull apart of our President in Dallas Texas.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    dickeyrat, 31 Oct 2019 @ 3:53am

    So what can you do? This is just the way things go down in Trump's Fascist dictatorship. Your orders are: GET USED TO IT!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Shawn, 31 Oct 2019 @ 4:50am

      Re:

      This has been going on for quite a while. Long before trump was in office.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2019 @ 7:56am

        Re: Re:

        The GOP really began its descent into insanity with Nixon and the war on drugs. Prior to that they were just simply bigots with power and influence.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          David, 31 Oct 2019 @ 10:45am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Nixon resigned because it was obvious that there would be bi-partisan support for impeaching him over misconduct that was increasingly uncovered during impeachment inquiry proceedings. Spiro Agnew resigned as a vice president because of accusations of bribery independent from Watergate: that was why the impeachment fallback of a comparatively untainted Gerald Ford vice president was even available to the GOP when Nixon resigned.

          This is not the same GOP we are talking about here. Nobody will be forced to resign over corruption by them.

          It's also not the same Democratic Party by the way: quite a few things Obama was lambasted for would have been illegal in Nixon times, like extrajudicial killings on presidential orders.

          Obama did not do the Democrats a favor by changing the political landscape that moved the U.S. considerably more to the fascist doctrine where state interests trump individuals' rights.

          Where the GOP in turn positioned themselves in a manner differentiating them from the new Democrats is appalling, and Trump embodies and spearheads that new appalitionism.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2019 @ 4:52pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Interesting take - both parties are insane - can't argue with that, but I could argue how much.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 1 Nov 2019 @ 3:25am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "Interesting take - both parties are insane - can't argue with that, but I could argue how much."

              Irrelevant compared to the REAL issue - that no matter how insane, inept or malicious either side gets the voting population's main concern remains "But what about the other side?!?". Yeah, the republicans have gone mad in the same way a rabid dog has compared to the democrats comparatively harmless descent into early senility and dementia but what's really scary is the way the voters have reacted.

              The reason every president since GWB has gotten away with a rap sheet of scandals rapidly escalating in severity and irrationality is because both republican and democrat voters will go balls to the wall exculpating their chosen candidate whether his name is George, Obama, Trump, or Jeffrey Dahmer.

              Trump made a joke in poor taste about being able to shoot someone in the street and still not losing a single vote. What is in worse taste is that it doesn't appear to be a joke.

              You can say a lot about the US body politic now being held up by the rot infesting it, but the main reason as to why that is so is because the US voters steadfastly refuse to hear any facts coming in from outside their chosen echo chamber, assuming they even bother making a choice beyond "What was good enough for grandpappy is good enough for me" when they go to the polls. Something only 50% of the citizenry even bothers to do in the first place.

              It's no wonder most government-held authority ends up bent. Like a very old chinese saying has it, if the top beam in a house is crooked the lower beams won't be straight.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Ed (profile), 31 Oct 2019 @ 7:26am

    Again...

    NEVER TRUST A "Law Enforcement Officer". Ever.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2019 @ 7:59am

    In related news ....

    Police Owe Nothing To Man Whose Home They Blew Up, Appeals Court Says
    https://www.npr.org/2019/10/30/774788611/police-owe-nothing-to-man-whose-home-they-blew-up-appe als-court-says

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Wyrm (profile), 31 Oct 2019 @ 8:16am

    Second amendment?

    I'm also curious about the take on this issue by organization like the republican party and the NRA.

    They keep saying, among other excuses, that people have the right to bear arms in order to protect themselves from a tyrannical government. What is more tyrannical than the police raiding your home without announcing themselves, sometimes admitting themselves that it's in an illegal procedure, all guns drawn and ready to kill the moment something moves?

    I am so shocked not to hear a word from them in such cases.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      K`Tetch (profile), 31 Oct 2019 @ 11:17am

      Re: Second amendment?

      Probably because they know that outside of chest thumping, that argument has fuck-all validity.

      If you read the constitution, you'll note the 2nd exists to form a militia. If you read the enumerated powers of congress, one of them is to control the militia and use it to put down insurrections (it's not just the creation of copyright in that bit).

      So the 2nd doesn't have anything to do with 'protecting against tyranical governments', but is in fact the specific tool of a tyranical government, to specifically be used against those taking arms against the government.

      Let's be honest, the whole idea of this is absurd anyway, and was physically shown to be bullshit back in the 1920s (Blair Mountain) - since then personal weaponry hasn't advanced much, but aircraft alone has advanced beyond the Martin's used then (which had the speed and range of a small hatchback, but half the capacity) with binoculars and weighted message flags (think NFL penalty flags) to communicate, to supersonic fighters with 2+ tons of explosives usable from outside visual range and the ability to communicate globally in real-time and be coordinated by a 767 AWACS 200 miles away) and long-loiter drones with video uplink capability. To say nothing of the change from mark 1 tanks to the M1A2's, and Bradleys.
      Any Charge of the Redneck Brigade will end much as Tenyson's Crimean 300.

      The whole 'tyranny' thing is a scam, a made up story by gun lobbyists to sell guns to paranoid dipshits.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2019 @ 12:30pm

        Re: Re: Second amendment?

        Go back to school. Oh wait those committing tyranny are writing your books.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2019 @ 12:34pm

        Re: Re: Second amendment?

        ...and how much trouble has counterinsurgency posed the US military over the last 50 years? (Spoiler: a whole heckuvalot!)

        Half the art of insurgency is bootstrapping one's own capacity on the back of their foe's supply chain...

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 1 Nov 2019 @ 3:32am

          Re: Re: Re: Second amendment?

          "...and how much trouble has counterinsurgency posed the US military over the last 50 years?"

          In other countries, sure, where the "US government" consisted of a few platoons trying to take and retake hamburger hill umpteen times over in a countryside where every last citizen was against the foreign occupation.

          But ON US soil? I'm with K'Tetch on this one, the charge of the chest-thumping redneck brigade would end up as a brief wannabe Waco.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          K`Tetch (profile), 1 Nov 2019 @ 4:08pm

          Re: Re: Re: Second amendment?

          In a country where most of the troops don't know the language, where the population generally opposes them, where local knowledge is poor, and where htey're in limited manpower, in a climate they don't know?
          Yeah, it's a bit of a shitshow, and an annoyance.

          One of my wife's best friends is a major in the GA national guard (and a full time guardsman). before he went to OCS 12 years ago, he was a part time enlisted guardsman, and a deputy for the next county over for 10 years. He knows that county like a cop, he knows this county like a local. He knows a shit load of people, as do his parents, his friends, etc. In this rural part of GA (stuff filmed around here includes walking dead [also set here] and the 'bombed to shit' bits of the hunger games films, and even My Cousin Vinny. You don't think all those cops know all those 'insurrectionist' hiding places, because they're also where the crims hide. I personally know of about 4-5 militia groups around here, let alone the cops.

          A guerrilla movement needs distance to work, seperation of 'us and them' which you don't get in the US. And the 2nd Amendment works against you there too, because any armed shithead group already gets treated as a potential terrorist group, so info is collected.

          I was just listening to the BBC global podcast today and they were talking about who will take over ISIS after Baghdadi, and they were saying that it'll be someone we don't know, who'd take a pseudonym, and stay covert - because we don't have the inroads. You thing organised crime gangs that already try that don't get frustrated regularly as it is?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2019 @ 12:53pm

        Re: Re: Second amendment?

        If you are as young as you sound, you will see 110 years of tyranny come to fruition soon. The dollar will collapse bringing society to a stop. I wouldn't wish the future coming at you on my worse enemy.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Wyrm (profile), 31 Oct 2019 @ 9:33pm

        Re: Re: Second amendment?

        Yes, that was the joke.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Wendy Cockcroft (profile), 5 Nov 2019 @ 5:59am

        Re: Re: Second amendment?

        The whole 'tyranny' thing is a scam, a made up story by gun lobbyists to sell guns to paranoid dipshits.

        Confirmed correct. Actually taking up arms against the state will get you labelled a terrorist and flung in jail... assuming you survive both the rap and the ride.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    norahc (profile), 31 Oct 2019 @ 9:25am

    What the task force failed to notice during its "dynamic entry" was Betton's security camera.

    Maybe because Amazon Ring didn't know about it so they weren't able to tell the officers it existed.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2019 @ 10:55am

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but the Guygner case is the one where the witness who testified against the police wound up shot dead a few days after the trial, right?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Uriel-238 (profile), 31 Oct 2019 @ 12:33pm

    My memory of history (is fuzzy), US law-enforcement default to no-knock comes from the War on Drugs (circa 1970s?) in which doorknocking investigators would realize they were getting high up the cartel heirarchy when front doors were reinforced and doorknockers were gunned down through murder-holes. Also, even in low-level raids, knocking would cause evidence to be flushed, were a surprise forced entry might allow for some of the evidence to be salvaged.

    It was a hardball era, in which the cartels were also known to commission hits on attorneys and judges that successfully got high-ranking lieutenants convicted, sometimes hunting down all the officers involved in the arrest out of pure spite.

    Considering the escalation of SWAT raids from the 70s to the 2010s (an increase from 500/year to 50,000/year biased toward raiding minorities) law enforcement has forgotten how to police, rather than fight a protracted war. They never did work out how street gangs work, and still confuse the mischievous band of teenagers with the community policing organization with the global drug syndicate.

    And for the last thirty years, every member of the public is the enemy.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2019 @ 1:26pm

    Qualified Immunity seems pretty easy to me. If an officer follows the law and regulations they get Immunity. If they screw up and make a mistake them maybe they get immunity for one screw up but they better get it right in the future. The reason police announce themselves as police and wear easy to identify uniforms is so that people know it is the police and people who are innocent or at least have some respect for the law will not pull a gun to defend themselves. This is for the safety of the officers and the public, so if someone totally ignores policy and the intent of that policy in every respect like these officers did they should have the immunity stripped. The police department should have some serious consequences as well since they let the officers do this.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2019 @ 8:42pm

    Surprise

    "...they need the element of surprise to ensure officer safety..."

    I suspect they are increasingly working against their expressed intent. Certainly, there are ever more households where the default response to "surprise" will be a "Castle Doctrine" shooting. Even those with only rudimentary firearms training can be reliably expected to get the first guy through the door.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 Nov 2019 @ 5:25pm

      Re: Surprise

      Hopefully at the very least no-knockers have the right house before they throw the flash bang grenades in some toddler's crib next time we read about this treasonous practice by a bunch of rookies.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    DNY (profile), 1 Nov 2019 @ 6:41pm

    Rules of engagement

    The greatest scandal here is that our police operate with less restrictive rules of engagement than do our soldiers engaged in counter-insurgency operations against enemies who often pose as civilians, and with less severe consequences to their careers for unwarranted killings of civilians.

    The cops want military-style equipment, but not military discipline and military-style rules of engagement. They should be given military discipline and military-style rules of engagement, but not military style-equipment.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Uriel-238 (profile), 1 Nov 2019 @ 7:02pm

      Police equipment ≠ Military equipment.

      The very first example that comes to my mind is that solders use FMJ rounds in their rifles engineered to pierce infantry armor. They have to refrain from using hollow point rounds which are considered inhumane. It's one of smaller (and more common) war crimes.

      Police, on the other hand, are encouraged to use hollow points when they can't get their hands on glasers. FMJ rounds fired out of an assault rifle will penetrate several houses which is a liability when firing in a populated area. Glasers and hollowpoints penetrate significantly less, if at all.

      Military units are renowned for being overly brutal and lethal when sent in to occupy and police civilian areas. We have good cause to avoid doing it. When our police officers start believing they were military, it's time to send them back to the academy for a refresher.

      Of course, in the US, 2019 our brutality problems seem systemic, and that indicates the whole system may have to be dismantled and replaced... or hope it gets better over centuries.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 3 Nov 2019 @ 8:13am

    I just recently went through the Criminal Justice & Security Institute training course for concealed weapons, & I mean RECENTLY...so it's still fresh in my mind! If multiple people comes gangbusting through my front door screaming things at me & shining bright strobing flashlights in my eyes to where I can't see who it is, you damn BETCHA I'm drawing my weapon! I have no idea who these people are (I live in a sorta sketchy part of this city to begin with & police have used flash-bangs just two doors down, 3 years ago) I have no idea what these people want, & the Castle Doctrine comes to mind here. I didn't initiate this threat, I cannot "retreat" from this threat, so I have no choice but to RESPOND to this threat.
    This state doesn't have a "stand your ground" clause, but it DOES have a "no retreat" clause...(which is sorta the same thing)...so anyone who comes busting through the front door will be met with a response, especially when it's a "no knock" at the wrong address!
    I mean, HOW do I know who it is within .27 seconds?? They didn't announce. They didn't knock. They weren't invited into my home. Do we just roll over, belly up, like a puppy wanting a belly rub?? Is that what this country has become?? Violate ALL fundamental human rights just because someone didn't do the proper work BEFORE busting down my front door...AND THAT'S MY FAULT WHEN THINGS GO WRONG????
    /Yes, there's plenty more to situations like this (in the end after a THOROUGH investigation) but not in that fraction of time after my front door comes off it's hinges! So if police say that they want to preserve "evidence" by a no-knock, they DAMN well better be right because I've never been arrested, no traffic tickets & no calls to my place for anything. So if they say that it was a mistake, I can say the same thing too, by drawing my weapon in self-defense because I didn't know who they were....RIIIIGHT???

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Close

Add A Reply

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Techdirt Gear
Shop Now: I Invented Email
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads

Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.