Leah Maurer on Experiencing a SWAT Raid in Columbia, Missouri

Tuesday, September 4th, 2012

Eapen Thampy

Jason Zepps hosted a community sound-off on this afternoon’s “Shadow Convention” coverage of the War on Drugs by Huffington Post Live. I wanted to point this segment out as it contains an account of another marijuana SWAT raid by the infamous Columbia Police Department. Leah Maurer narrates at 11:05; I am providing a rough transcription because I can’t embed the video, so you should click through and listen:

…My husband and I were involved in a home invasion by ten armed men in a SWAT team style raid on our house…we had no prior record…this was in Missouri, where we used to live… Only someone who’s lived through that can speak to the horror that you have to go through and having to have your civil liberties violated in that way by this overarching force like Walter referenced earlier the way that police forces have become so empowered and people have begun to fear them and it’s because of things like this when yo uhave three men that are three times my size holding machine guns at me when I have a harmless plant growing in my basement…

…I believe that they came into the house, and they found what they were looking for, and that after that all they continued to look for was money. I think they were trying to find a lot of money, which we had none…they ripped our whole house apart looking for that, because what they were looking for was pretty obvious, the grow was pretty obvious…

…We relocated 2000 miles away from them because after having our house drug through like that, not only did that happen but our faces were all over the media in this tiny little city in Missouri, we lost friends over it, my children were treated differently because of it, it was a pretty horrific experience and we just knew we had to get out. My husband was arrested because of it and is now a felon and is now serving probation…

…We were two people who completely had our liberties taken from us that day…

Digg it |  reddit |  del.icio.us |  Fark

14 Responses to “Leah Maurer on Experiencing a SWAT Raid in Columbia, Missouri”

  1. #1 |  whidby | 

    “when I have a harmless plant growing in my basement …”

    I assume this was a SWAT raid because of a shoplifted hydrangea …right?

  2. #2 |  Eapen Thampy | 

    As I noted this was a marijuana SWAT raid.

  3. #3 |  awp | 

    I figured it was a venus flytrap raid. Those are the most dangerous plants.

    or maybe one of these other ones.


    Pop mech ten most dangerous plants.

  4. #4 |  divadab | 

    Thanks for sharing your story. The sheer evil that is the prohibition of cannabis produces only evil outcomes.

  5. #5 |  Terry H. | 

    I hope to live to see the day our country’s laws re: drugs reach a point of sanity. I’m 37. I don’t expect to see it.

  6. #6 |  Windy | 

    URL from DrugWarRant’s comment section to the Judge Gray video:
    “in this case the new and improved SWAT-H vehicle. This is merely the latest and greatest entrant in the “gentrification”-vehicles that taxpayer dollars are buying in order to be more effectively suppressed as one after another pillar of this country’s democracy is taken down. And, for your viewing pleasure, here are the highest crime rate regions that will likely get their ‘fair’ share of attention from this perriwinkle-blue camper-van of enforced docility.”

  7. #7 |  marie | 

    More need to speak up when they are raided for non-violent offenses. People need those stories to understand how the police operate. Until it happens to you–or to someone like you–it is too easy to ignore.

  8. #8 |  Yizmo Gizmo | 

    “I think they were trying to find a lot of money, which we had none…”

    Armed home invaders desperate for money. Good thing they had badges;
    otherwise this would be a serious crime.

  9. #9 |  Personanongrata | 

    Welcome to the land of the tyrant and the home of the slave.

    SWAT for warrant service is terrorism.

    Why couldn’t they just knock?

  10. #10 |  JLS | 

    Personanongrata “Why couldn’t they just knock?”

    You know the answer to that. It’s fun to dress up and play soldier. And it’s safe.

    Especially since these are Americans and they won’t shoot back or try to get revenge like Iraqis or Afghans.

  11. #11 |  marie | 

    Why couldn’t they just knock?

    JLS has a great answer but the more complete answer is that terrorizing a family is an excellent way to get what you want. In the middle of chaos, people don’t think clearly. The LEOs know this; in fact, they depend on this. We all know not to talk to the cops without a lawyer but when you are faced with cops shooting the dog, holding guns on the children…most of us would do just about anything to calm things down.

  12. #12 |  whim | 

    Marie: Excellent comments. The police also work in close collaboration with state Child Protective Services to take children away from their parents, once charged with a drug crime, and to work toward permanently severing their parental rights. Children taken from parents are worth a bounty ($ thousands) from the Federal DHS for “fastrack” adoption.

  13. #13 |  Red | 

    Everything’s ok. We all belong to the government now. The SWAT raids are just there to make sure we lead moral lives and always worship the god state.

  14. #14 |  Ed | 

    When you try to grow marijuana, you first have to eliminate ALL of the pests. Spread the word.