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America under drug war occupation

In Columbia, Missouri, SWAT teams storms into house, kills one dog in front of the 7-year old kid, wounds another, terrorizes the family. Cops find grinder, pipe and a small amount of marijuana and charge the father with possession plus child endangerment.

I think you can decide if the child was in danger and from whom.

See if you can make sense out of this:

Because the SWAT team acts on the most updated information available, the team wanted to enter the house before marijuana believed to be at the location could be distributed, she said.

“If you let too much time go by, then the drugs are not there,” she said.

Drug distributors traditionally have a history with firearms, which is why the SWAT team is used when executing such warrants, [police spokeswoman Officer Jessie] Haden said. If the SWAT team believed they could have executed the warrant successfully during the daytime when the wife and child were not present, they would have, she said.

So apparently, if they had waited until the next day, even with surveillance, the “drugs” would have been gone, presumably through underground tunnels, I guess.

Interestingly, in another article:

[Deputy Chief Tom] Dresner previously said that intelligence gathered before the raid did not indicate the child was in the home.

The video is disturbing to watch, but the really disturbing things are what happened before the video — the truly warped thinking that created the laws and the procedures that made people think this was a good idea.

[Thanks Radley and others]

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42 comments to America under drug war occupation

  • kaptinemo

    Rather obvious what’s creating the situation of ‘child endangerment’…and who’s doing the endangering. But the victims are lucky; they’re still breathing.

    Little Alberto Sepulveda was also a victim of ‘child endangerment’ from those sworn to ‘save him from drugs’. This was accomplished by shotgunning him in the back at point-blank range as he lay face-down on the floor of his home.

    Oh, yes, he was ‘saved’, alright. Like I said, the Columbia victims were lucky.

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  • bobreaze

    I hope that kid grows up becomes a politician and changes our corrupt system. He has motivation a dead dog and the system throwing his dad in jail.

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  • kant

    Well in all fairness, the incompetence of the police is very staggering. Have we forgotten that the feds [a href=”http://www.drugwarrant.com/2010/02/keystone-kops/”]lost a truck packed with cannabis while under surveillance[/a]

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  • kant

    ok lets try that again.

    Keystone Kops

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  • claygooding

    Lost or sold? That was just too classic a move.Pete says it
    with “No government in the world can compete with the black market in financial compensation for police officers.” And it is so true,from the new search and seizure laws enacted to enforce prohibition,too federal funds for aggressively enforcing laws and allowing other crimes to fall to the side.

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  • nt109

    scumbag pigs.

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  • Cannabis

    Looks like they watched too many episodes of COPS, plus did some lousy police work before-hand to boot. Traumatized that poor kid for life. There is absolutely no reason for operations like that at all.

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  • steve

    Of course the dogs were acting aggressively, the swat team kicked the door down. All too often they blame it on aggressiveness of the dog, yet they are doing exactly what they should be doing, going crazy when an intruder enters your home. These swat raids make me so sick.

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  • ray

    This make me ill…I love my dog Chloe…and judging by this mans agonizing cries for his dog, he loved it too…and WHO ENDANGERED WHO…pigs breaking the door in, killing animals in front of a child…gun shots fired by pigs….that child will be screwed up forever, and THEY ARE THE CAUSE….shame on them….end this insane prohibitation, please, for the children’s sake.

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  • Ziggy

    All that for a grinder and an undisclosed, perhaps less than a grinder full of marijuana? Lord knows if it was an ounce they’d have posed for pictures.

    How do these people sleep at night after doing something like this? Whether or not he was a big time marijuana dealer, was this the appropriate response?

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  • Eric D.

    And the police have the audacity to wonder why the public doesn’t have faith in them. That poor child is going to need years of counseling after witnessing that, and if his father was a good parent overall, he may never be able to comprehend the rationale for the damage the police have caused in this situation. How this can be even remotely possible outside of a military state is beyond explanation.

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  • Dante

    In a former post, you said Mr. Cline called the Chicago cops “stupid”.

    After watching this video, I would like to add “terrorists”.

    Bush was right – we are in grave danger. From the cops.

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  • Joel

    This is just plain disgusting, pure and simple. I just got a puppy 2 weeks ago and never had a dog before in my life; I can’t imagine cops busting through my door and shooting my dog just because it started barking at them. There are more colorful words that I’d use to describe this police tactic, but I can’t get them out past the sick feeling in my stomach after watching this…

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  • ezrydn

    I wonder if cops busted into my place and my Cockatoo went crazy, if it’s be a scene out of a Cheech and Chong movie, akin to the taking of dogs?

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  • Ftp

    Oink oink oink!

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  • Nick z

    Have they stolen the young girl yet and put her into a foster home to be sexually abused by perverts?

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  • denmark

    One of the billionaire’s that gives their money to cannabis reform organizations should seriously consider helping this family and others. These types of ill thought out actions should be brought to light by a high profile lawyer.

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  • Maryjane Hempfield

    This was made possible by decades of slander against cannabis smokers. I know conservatives who really think “potheads” are “not real people”. Arg!!!

    Everyone come out of the closet! Now! I did. And I have a cop in my family.

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  • Marcos

    There were several law enforcement and civil breaches of the US Constitution.

    I’m proud of the homeowner because he knew his Constitutional rights, namely he has the right to remain silent, and he has the right to counsel.

    The homeowner has a great foundation to sue the living daylights out of these incompetent Keystone cops.

    The cops are glorified security guards with very little understanding of law, constitutional rights, or arrest warrants.

    Yes….they have the guns and that makes all the difference. But people are starting to realize what it means to bear arms.

    This makes me sick. And for what? Marijuana? Its almost legal in all 50 states.

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  • Just me

    This crap is just gotta stop. All this over a weed they CAN NOT control. Whos causing the danger? And they always shoot your dog, wft? Just gotta kill something huh. Take your shit down the road, its no longer wantted in America. How about doing this to some child predators or some murderers, those who deserve that brand of TERRORISM. Thats what this is legal TERRORISM.

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  • denmark

    Very true Just me, very true.

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  • Paul

    I saw this video on Radley Balko’s blog, and it raise my blood pressure to dangerous levels. Took awhile to calm down.

    He points out that 100 to 150 raids just like this one happen every day. Shooting the dog seems to be standard operating procedure. In this case, they spent more time hunting down the dogs and shooting them than securing the family.

    The cops looked bored by the routine. They ignored the man and everything he was saying and spent more time looking for their damn Miranda warning card than anything else. I strongly suspect they did everything correctly–they had their rubber stamp search warrant, the dogs are always deemed a threat and shot (no doubt there are court precedents that allow it), and the misdemeanor quantity of MJ in the house must trigger some evil law that calls it child endangerment.

    There really is no excuse for this kind of thing. This is EXACTLY what the bill of rights was designed to prevent, but now has become commonplace. The awful thing is that it seems unstoppable, and I think the police and civil service have become our masters. I have serious doubts we can put a stop to it.

    What is frustrating is that we here seem to be in the minority who truly care. An outrageous video like this one can upset the average person, but they soon forget about it and go on voting for their local tough on crime politicians for a variety of other reasons, even if they are offended by these sorts of things. Since the public never really gets riled up about this stuff, the cops, courts, and bureaucracy just keep on doing things their way, getting more arrogant, vicious, and just plain mean every year.

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  • kaptinemo

    Paul, I agree with almost all you’ve said, except the bit about there not seeming to be any remedy. The remedy is in fact already at work; it’s just exceedingly slow in its’ progression. Steamrollers usually are. And that’s just what the post-Meltdown economy is; a steamroller with the brakes released, lumbering slowly along…and bearing down on all of us.

    Consider what would happen to an already cash-strapped municipality if it were hit with multiple lawsuits due to the thuggish behavior of its’ law enforcement personnel. Prior to the Meltdown, most cities could weather that.

    They can’t anymore. Most small towns would be instantly bankrupted by such a suit…with no relief coming from State or Feds. And that’s just with one lawsuit. Multiple lawsuits would have the fiscal effect of being hit with an artillery barrage in the real world. The credit ratings of those cities would plummet…and those who could (the ones the city needs because they’re the high earners and therefore the higher taxed) begin moving elsewhere.

    Enough of that, with the taxpayers fronting the ever-higher bills, and it would become very clear to said taxpayers what the fiscal costs of drug prohibition are. (Don’t bother trying to rouse them with fiery speeches about their rights being abrogated; the majority of people in this country don’t seem to be bothered about that at all, but talk money, and watch the eyes light up.)

    And it would also become clear when the cost of paying for those lawsuits began to cut into other things, like desperately-needed social services, that the fiscal cost of drug prohibition is too high.

    Themoneythemoneythemoneythemoneny – that must be our mantra. because, the fact is, it’s working. More and more editorials in media outlets have been taking up the question of whether we can afford drug prohibition anymore, and what are the prohibs going to counter with? As has been pointed out here time and again, the necessity of sheltering and feeding kids will trump ideology every time. And that’s all the prohibs have to stand on now…ideology.

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  • SteveGrahovak

    Thats the most cowardly un-American terroist type attack on an AMERICAN family I may have ever seen,Who is the enemy & what did this accomplish ? Just sad.

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  • SteveGrahovak

    Not to mention the pussies are in swat gear & affraid of a dog.

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  • […] which has recently begun a new campaign for legalization), Scott Morgan at Drug War Chronicle, and Pete Guither at DrugWarRant have also been following the […]

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  • […] Peter Guither says, “the really disturbing things are what happened before the video — the truly warped thinking […]

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  • strayan

    Some dried plant cuttings are more dangerous than people busting into your house with guns and shooting your dog.

    Nice.

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  • […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by mrsalbrecht. mrsalbrecht said: http://bit.ly/ccXEC9 America is under occupation. […]

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  • Terrye

    Stop prosecuting for marijuana; legalize it! The police should be concentrating on gang activities such as: drive by shootings, robbery and murder. Legalizing drugs would diminish or perhaps eliminate gangs. Also there are some who are convicted of drunken driving as many as 4 times and because they have money are still walking the streets and more importantly, still behind the wheel. Charging into a family’s home and terrorizing them for a few ounces of marijuana is insane and this incident was not well thought out! I hope the familly sues the police dept. for every cent they can get! The police are truly out of control!

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  • Terrye

    Another thought: what if I called the police on a neighbor who maybe left his trash can out in front of his yard for days, or something silly like that and told the police the man was in possession of marijuana! I suppose they would storm that innocent man’s home as well?
    Get a grip!

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  • […] which has recently begun a new campaign for legalization), Scott Morgan at Drug War Chronicle, and Pete Guither at DrugWarRant have also been following the […]

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  • Dana

    I just found your website, and you are doing great work. You should re-name the website to “Stuff the Founding Fathers were trying to protect us from when they wrote the Fourth Ammendment”

    The militarization of our national police force is really, really scary. Thank God the man in the video did not lose his life.

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  • […] which has recently begun a new campaign for legalization), Scott Morgan at Drug War Chronicle, and Pete Guither at DrugWarRant have also been following the […]

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  • Melfranks

    Agreed Dana, and it could not be more crystal clear:
    “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures…”
    Anyone who believes this search was “reasonable” in any way is beyond help.

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  • bobby

    UHH does anybody realize if nothing illegal was being done the police never would have been there in the first place.? Don’t try and blame officers who everyday put their lives on the line. I’m not so blind that I don’t realize that their are cops which abuse their authority. If everybody is against the police, shame on them when they get into a car accident and the officers have to figure out wh is at fault, shame on them when they are in fear or the lives and or family and they need to call on them. It is always the officer who is first on scene to a bad situation with exception to a few highly underpaid security officers. I am none of the above mentioned positions, but I do realize what they go through on a daily basis. Well over 75% of people out there will only experience seeing something terrible on you-tube rather than livng it. Also reason why drug dealers have dogs?? I think so….

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  • Carolyn Cooper

    Seems too me that we no longer have rights even in our homes
    this family needs to get a lawyer

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  • Tom

    My God, this is frightening as hell. Is this America or communist China? Give these guys guns and badges and they lose all human decency. Someone should go to jail for this and it’s not that ‘evil doer’ with a little weed.

    Wake up people!!! The government should fear the people NOT the people fear the government and their paramilitary police force. Can you say K G B?

    This is just plain sick!

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  • […] which has recently begun a new campaign for legalization), Scott Morgan at Drug War Chronicle, and Pete Guither at DrugWarRant have also been following the […]

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