August 4, 2015—Every week close to 1,000 paramilitary police raids are carried out on homes and businesses across America. Recent developments in two separate instances show this militarization trend also has an effect on how police perceive themselves and the law, even after they’ve clearly been shown on video to have violated the law.
From OC Weekly:
A lawsuit, filed last week in Orange County Superior Court by three unidentified police officers and the Santa Ana Police Officers Association, seeks to prevent Santa Ana Police Department internal affairs investigators from using the video as they sort out what happened during the May 26 raid of Sky High Collective.
Remember this story? Police were caught eating marijuana edibles by a camera they failed to destroy after raiding a dispensary. The footage also shows multiple officers cracking jokes about a wheelchair-bound woman they had just kicked out. No wonder the union and three anonymous cops are claiming their privacy was violated. Have you ever heard of police treating anyone else in a similar situation in a similar way?
The next story comes from a SWAT team who raided the wrong house in Evansville, Indiana on June 21, 2012. The latest development in that case came when a judge dismissed the SWAT team’s claim to “qualified immunity.” The SWAT team actually had the gall to claim they weren’t liable for what happened during this raid:
I think you’ll find the reactions of both grandmother and teen girl to be remarkably calm and contained given the absurd and violent circumstances. (There is some possibly horrendous dialog around 5:30 where one officer says “here’s a cat” and another a second or so later says “I’ll kick it” but it could be that he is referring to a door to knock it open and not the cat.)
What’s the solution to police militarization? Comment below!
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