Another Isolated Incident

Friday, January 30th, 2009

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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28 Responses to “Another Isolated Incident”

  1. #1 |  ktc2 | 

    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?

  2. #2 |  Ahcuah | 

    Now hold on just a minute, here.

    They waited until he re-entered his apartment and then did the dynamic entry? Why not just arrest him on the street, take his key, and then enter and search the apartment.

    Damn cowboys!

    It seems to me that every warrant for a dynamic entry has to include a list of all the reasons why they just can’t grab the guy on the street. (And the only excuse that should matter would be that the guy never leaves his house.)

  3. #3 |  CHRISC | 

    Well, what’s the hulabaloo? At least they didn’t execute a puppy. Seriously, though, if they did this stuff as regularly in middle and upper class neighborhoods as they do here there would be such a clamor. Try telling these people that is no class warfare in Amerika, they live right in the middle of it.

  4. #4 |  Bob | 

    Wait…

    So, this wasn’t even the wrong UNIT of a duplex, it was the wrong duplex altogether.

    So… instead of, for example… 4237A, they went to 4235B, found it empty and decided to bang on the door at 4235A too, because, you know… they were in the neighborhood.

    Then I guess one of them had a G3 phone with Google-Maps and a GPS, so they found the address on the warrant next door. Huh! The addresses are in numerical order! With evens and odds on opposite sides of the street! Who knew? I like how they were almost given kudos for figuring that out “Within minutes”.

    So then they just sauntered over there and made an arrest. It doesn’t say if they went to the wrong unit in that building first, though…

    So! Let’s look at what we have here… Packing a No-Knock, our boys in blue managed to get at least 3 dynamic entries in on one warrant… that’s 2 extra chances to stumble in on people smoking pot, or having a bag of it in plain sight. Or if someone was fool enough to try to defend their home or resist in any way? Score! Felony Arrest!

    I wanna see the fucking tapes, audio or video… documenting the 3 weeks spend watching this guy’s house. I have big odds that says they’re aren’t any, and that was just bullshit to get a No-Knock.

    Oh wait… the No-Knock was because it was a bad area…

    And you wonder why people who are economically forced to live in ‘bad areas’ don’t trust the police. Huh!

  5. #5 |  Omar | 

    Another Gwinnett County story!?! What the hell, guys?

    I’m actually surprised this is happening so much – it’s not like the GPD to be so stupid. We left that to Snellville, Lawrenceville, Duluth local pd’s to be the village idiots. I generally trusted GPD to act like adults.

    My rambling angry and probably wrong take on this…
    I was born and raised in Gwinnett county. The cops/people there are scared out of their pants about all the Mexicans moving in. More and more Mexicans move into Gwinnett, and as far as I can tell, the white people just see them as threats. The cops generally treat the Mexicans with suspicion and don’t really care if they get hurt. I can hear it now…”The Rios’s, until proved otherwise, were probably illegal immigrants who needed to be shipped out anyway. They have no rights. Respect the constitution and the rule of law.”

    Don’t forget this little gem…

    http://www.reason.com/brickbat/show/37428.html

    Thanks, Bert, you freaking jerk.
    http://www.neighbors4nasuti.com/

    For the record, I find Brooklyn, NY (where I live now) to be MORE racially insane and insecure than Gwinnett county – that’s because in Gwinnett, we have three races: White, Black, Mexican. My arab-skinned self counted as white (I think). Yellow-skinned people are white if they do a lot of math, but if they drive a fast car, they are Mexican.

    Up here in NYC, we got Irish, Italians, Dominicans, Egyptians, Mexicans, Orthodox Jews, Chinese, Puerto Ricans, and more. Generally, if you live in a racially tight community up here, you hate the two or three races that border your neighborhood. And everyone hates the blacks because blacks will either be on welfare or they are stealing cars or some other nonsense.

    Human beings can be so fucked up in the head. It’s a shame, but the police reflect our insanity far too often.

    One day I will move to a land of rainbows and harmony, where people respect each other’s space, lives, property, liberty, etc. Until then, I guess I’ll just keep wondering what color the people keep tagging my old house are.

  6. #6 |  Chris in AL | 

    Bob: “So… instead of, for example… 4237A, they went to 4235B, found it empty and decided to bang on the door at 4235A too, because, you know… they were in the neighborhood.”

    That’s what is sounds like…and all this AFTER watching the suspect enter 4237A. That is like playing three card monte, having the guy show you the queen, NOT MIX UP THE CARDS, and then you pick the wrong one. And then break in the door on the other wrong one as well, just to teach it a lesson.

    I feel SOOO much safer with these guys on the job. I mean, without the cops we would have armed gunmen breaking into the homes of innocent people and assaulting them.

    Oh, wait….

  7. #7 |  Bob | 

    Here’s an excerpt from another Gwinnett County raid in December:

    http://www.myfoxatlanta.com/myfox/pages/Home/Detail?contentId=8045038&version=2&locale=EN-US&layoutCode=TSTY&pageId=1.1.1&sflg=1

    “Gwinnett County Police said they intended to execute a no knock search warrant at a home at 2934 Valley Spring Drive in Lawrenceville, which is an unincorporated area of Gwinnett County. Investigators mistakenly entered the wrong home.

    Once officers entered the house, they quickly realized that they were in the wrong location. Two adults, a male and a female, were briefly detained. No one was injured.

    The search warrant was later served at the correct location at 2921 Valley Spring Drive.”

    Oops! They went to 2921 instead of 2934 after a 3 month investigation! Whoops! Not even the correct side of the street! What, do they use MISS CLEO’S psychics to find these houses? Mail delivery must be spotty in Gwinnett if you can’t tell what address you’re at, or even which side of the street you’re on.

  8. #8 |  Dave Krueger | 

    Just be glad they don’t let cops deliver mail. Not only would they deliver it to the wrong house, no one’s pets would be safe, either.

  9. #9 |  parse | 

    Bankhead said the agents regret the mistake. He disputes Rios’ claim that the agents entered the Rios house — he said they only banged on that door and dented it.

    That’s a nice touch. They only banged on the door and dented it. Happens every day.

  10. #10 |  Omar | 

    And obviously, my above comment has little to do with this story, but is just rambling anger of how my hometown operates when it comes to race relations…which IMHO is pretty awful.

    If this was a wealthy white neighborhood, there wouldn’t be uproar then either…because it wouldn’t have happened.

  11. #11 |  ktc2 | 

    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.

  12. #12 |  Bob | 

    Here’s another report… notice how it’s different from the first one. The ‘dented door’ was the first one hit, then the one next door where noone was home.

    http://www.gwinnettdailypost.com/main.asp?SectionID=6&SubSectionID=6&ArticleID=55676&TM=386.52

    Also, the guy they saw entering the apartment was not identified as Jesus, just a guy matching his description, parked on the street.

    Basically, they saw a Mexican go into a building and rolled Code 3 on it.

    Then… when the occupants used the Jedi mind trick on them “The door you have dented in not the door you’re looking for… move along” they said “Hey! This door we dented isn’t the door we’re looking for, go to the next one, boys!”

    Only when they raided THAT apartment, and found that noone was home did it occur to them to look at the address on the warrant. “Guys! Look at this warrant! This isn’t even the right address! Does someone have a G3 phone with Google Maps?” .. “Not me!” … “Me either!” … “Damn it Jim, We’re SWAT thugs, not mailmen! We don’t know how addresses work!”

    Hang on… lemme check to see if these reports are coming from The Onion News… Nope! This is the ‘New Professionalism’ in action, kids! Be afraid.

  13. #13 |  Mattocracy | 

    Hey Omar,

    Do you remember when you thought about joining the Airforce and put on your app that you were African American because your dad is from Egypt to prove a point about race and ethnicity? And that giant black recruiter told you Egypt didn’t really count? I do, and it was fucking hilarious.

    Our days dealing with whitey in Gwinnett was just a small taste of the real world.

  14. #14 |  Omar | 

    Yea I remember that. I think the quote from 6’5″ tall 2nd Lt. Smith was “I thought you said you wuz black on your information card”.

    And my answer: “No sir, must have been a mistake. I didn’t mean to uh…yea, no.”

    Sometimes your hard lessons are easier than they could have been.

    -Cadet Col Omar [REDACTED], Shiloh HS, USAFJROTC (ret)

  15. #15 |  Cynical In CA | 

    #8 | Dave Krueger | January 30th, 2009 at 11:17 am

    “Just be glad they don’t let cops deliver mail. Not only would they deliver it to the wrong house, no one’s pets would be safe, either.”

    Dave, I’ve thought about why the government defends its monopoly on the delivery of first-class mail. I think it is so that a government official (letter carrier) visits EVERY private residence and business six days per week.

    Isn’t it nice that the government leaves us alone one day per week and select holidays?

    I could actually see the deputization of letter carriers coming about in the future.

  16. #16 |  Omar | 

    @Cynical in CA,

    “I think it is so that a government official (letter carrier) visits EVERY private residence and business six days per week.”

    Someone agrees with you…He’s the “Postal Regulatory Commission Chairman”, whatever that means.

    “In rural America, the post office is the face of the American government. ”

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,485407,00.html

  17. #17 |  Dave Krueger | 

    #15 Cynical In CA

    Dave, I’ve thought about why the government defends its monopoly on the delivery of first-class mail. I think it is so that a government official (letter carrier) visits EVERY private residence and business six days per week.

    When you put it in those terms, it’s very depressing. It makes me want to stop getting mail.

    Personally, I think it’s because, without the mail man, most people would have no visible evidence that government does anything productive at all.

  18. #18 |  Dave Krueger | 

    #16 | Omar

    “In rural America, the post office is the face of the American government. ”

    Well, if the post office gets their way, we’ll soon be seeing that face 1/6th less often.

  19. #19 |  Will | 

    OK, while it’s horrible that they got the wrong place … there’s something else that I think you are missing as well

    “A no-knock search warrant had already been obtained […] because the duplex was in a known gang area”

    OK, so just being in a known gang area is now reason enough to get a no-knock search warrant?!? I’m hoping there was more on the warrant request than that, but can’t the reporter at least show a little skepticism about the process and requirements??

  20. #20 |  Cynical In CA | 

    It gets even worse, Dave. For the vast majority of Americans, their children are under the supervision of government officials up to eight hours per day, 180 days per year.

    In loco parentis. In the State we trust.

    If the U.S. Postal Service cuts its delivery days, I wonder if the government will ramp up community outreach programs for police officers. The skeptic in me disbelieves that government will reduce its presence.

  21. #21 |  Jeff | 

    The money quote:

    “It’s a simple mistake that could be avoided if people would do their jobs.” Perhaps we can have this made into plaques and put one above the door at every police department in NEON FUCKING LETTERS.

    Ahem.

    @Omar: this one was GBI, not Gwinnett PD. I currently live in Gwinnett, and while I’m wary of police in general, I’ve actually found GPD officers to be generally be professional and courteous, at least in my personal experiences. Of course, that’s partially due to the fact that I own a house on a street that’s mostly Mexican renters…

    Anyway, the Gwinnett story from December is markedly different – GPD made a mistake, and when they realized it, a supervisor came down and apologized while the damage was immediately fixed. It doesn’t make things right, per se, but at least someone in a position of power at least tried to pretend that they give a damn.

  22. #22 |  Jeff | 

    Oops – I meant to say in my post above:

    “Of course, that’s partially due to the fact that *I’m white and* I own a house on a street that’s mostly Mexican renters…”

  23. #23 |  CJJScout | 

    Lovely, my home county. If they busted up in my house you’d probably have another Ryan Fredrick case.

  24. #24 |  CJJScout | 

    Jeff, I tend to agree with you. I train with several GPD and they are pretty decent guys.

  25. #25 |  Omar | 

    Good for GPD for keeping the respect of police-weary libertarians. I misread the article, and assumed it was GPD. In my post above, I even said “I generally trusted GPD to act like adults.”

    I don’t know how they treat the darker-toned among us, although I have little information to go on.

  26. #26 |  RichieRich | 

    It is too bad that citizens are never ( usually) in a position to blast the thug cops as soon as they storm the wrong home. It is perfectly legal and defensible to use deadly force to repel illegal entries into your abode.

    If the cops get the wrong address, then tey are risking beng treated as home invasion criminals, and the penalty for that is getting blasted by gunfire. If four or fiv copsgot wasted every time they got an addres wrong, maybe one f those morons would actually take the time to do their jobs correctly.

    Citizens have an absolute right to enjoy the security of their homes, and when armed and masked thugs( cops) storm a home that isinhabited by the innocent, they deserve to get shot.

    The only problem is that the poor innocents will no doubt be gunned down by the other pigs or at least charged falsely despte the innocence of he defenders. Cops want to be able to storm ANY home at ANY time for ANY reason …and expect not to be held accountable in any way. Fix the door? How about the trauma of masked thugs invading your home? Cops who make these kind of ‘ mistakes’ are no better than criminals…and deserve violent retaliation to repel them if they crew p. Why should WE suffer and die because stupid thug cops are too dull of wit to read an address?

    Disgusting…and it keeps happening because not enough cops get shot doing this crap and no actions are taken by their superiors, as usual. Cops are the enemy…and that is sad.

  27. #27 |  Marta | 

    Those must surely be the STUPIDEST cops in the world!!! They watch a place for THREE WEEKS and still raid the wrong place!!! How these people can be allowed to have ANY control over anyone else’s life is beyond me!!

  28. #28 |  Gwinnett County’s Greatest Hits | The Agitator | 

    […] You may remember Gwinnett County, Georgia from such hits as “Where Did the Coke Go?,”  “Smothered, Covered, and Tasered,”   “The I Accidentally Entered the Wrong House and Killed a Dalmatian Blues”  “Disabled Guy and a SWAT Team,”  “No-Knock, Wrong Wouse,”  and the follow-up just a few months later, “Sorry We Pointed Our Guns at Your Baby (We Got the Wrong House Again.)” […]

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