SORRY! WRONG HOUSE.

Two quick notes:

1. Shockingly, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals managed to evaluate the circumstances of a 2007 DEA drug raid and determine that holding a gun to an 11 year old girl's head constitutes excessive force:

Next they went to the 11-year-old's room. The girl was sleeping. Agents woke her up by shouting "Get down on the fucking ground." The girl's eyes shot open, but she was, according to her own testimony, "frozen in fear." So the agents dragged her onto the floor. While one agent handcuffed her, another held a gun to her head.

At least the DEA accomplished something in the end, though, despite its casual disregard of the law.

After 30 minutes, the agents removed the children's handcuffs. After two hours, the agents realized they had the wrong house — the product of a sloppy license plate transcription – and left.

Oh. It's a sad commentary on the War on Drugs mentality of militarized law enforcement that we have to take the fact that they managed not to kill anybody as a victory. Did anyone else immediately think of Lard's "Drug Raid at 4 AM" with Jello Biafra's frantic description and killer full-stop ending?

"Sorry! Wrong house."

2. From the archives, elections are pragmatic affairs for most voters. We generally realize that this is an exercise in choosing between the available options rather than clutching to principles and waiting for the perfect candidate. Enjoy one of my favorite FJM-style posts, responding to a Hillary Clinton dead-ender who argued, as many did, that Clinton's supporters would not support Obama. Actually, they seem to have gotten over it pretty quickly. This is worth keeping in mind when someone tells you that Republicans aren't going to vote for Romney. Are they excited about him? Of course not. Will they get over it? For the most part, yes.

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18 Responses to “SORRY! WRONG HOUSE.”

  1. Ed W. Says:

    Unfortunately, we've seen this movie before, and it ends in 2 years when the Supreme Court reverses the decision on appeal, with a note to the 9th Circuit that reads "Suck it, hippies" (in legalese, anyway). There will be some jibber about how the Constitution does not prohibit law enforcement officers performing their duties from using whatever reasonable means of force are necessary, with additional jabber about how the level of force that is necessary should be evaluated based on the facts as they appeared to the officer, and not to some idiot tree-hugging judge, or some idiot bleeding-heart jury. Whether or not the DEA had the right house will be deemed to be irrelevant to the Constitutional analysis. The bottom line will be that where there's a "non-compliant" suspect, a lawman is free to do whatever he wants, even if it's something as monumentally stupid as holding a gun to the head of an 11 y.o. girl. Cause she could have a grenade under her teddy bear.

    Reversed, remanded, end of story. Plus, the girl was probably a Mexican or something, so f' her (this part will probably only be in Thomas' concurring opinion).

  2. Jimcat Says:

    Regarding the intra-party squabbles: I pointed out to my Facebook friends a few months ago that "the party is tearing itself apart" makes a more catchy headline than "some people are dissatisfied with the party's likely nominee but will probably end up voting for him anyway". It's more about selling papers (or, these days, generating clicks) than getting to the truth.

  3. Major Kong Says:

    I don't understand. Why didn't the family use their 2nd Amendment rights to stop these jack-booted big-government thugs?

  4. c u n d gulag Says:

    The real militarization of police started even before "The War on Drugs" – another senseless and expensive war.
    But it sure picked-up speed then!

    And what's millions of incarcerated people, mostly NOT white, and dead innocent people, again, mostly NOT white, when there's a war to be won?
    'You can't make an omelet without blah, blah, blah…'

    Having said that, ya gotta look for the silver lining in everything.

    So, which would you rather have?
    Once the Military Industrial Complex comes up with better killing/disabling widgets to replace the old ones, that we give them to help further militarize OUR own police for intimidation in crowd control and home invasion situations?
    Or that we sell them to some Furrin' govments, where, after they use them on their own people, turn them on us. Only to find out too late that the sh*t they bought from us is now like having a sling-shot, when we have something modern.
    And sure, a few of our soldiers (or "peace-keepers) die, but, again, 'You can't make an omelet without yadda, yadda, yadda…'

    Them's da choices.

    Oh, and like @Ed W said above, don't let the 9th's decision give you any hope – unless Obama is reelected, and can replace a few of the Not-at-all Fab Five," they'll shove that decision right up the 9th's @$$!

  5. Middle Seaman Says:

    DEA, penal system and DOD grow out of proportion way back. You can get any drug you desire without difficulty. We built a jailing industry to house those unlucky, mainly colored, that violated the crime of using as if we care. We fight redundant wars all over the globe when all we need is a small military. With so many wars and jails, it's not surprising that we arrest young kids, put millions in jail and waste the little money we have.

    Two months into the Democratic primaries in 2008, it became clear that Obama cannot run a Walmart. In addition he was a racist, mean and his supporters developed the famous CDS (Clinton Derangement Symptom). I still voted for him and will again because he is the lesser of two major evils.

  6. Tim H. Says:

    Do you wonder if the DEA could work up that crime busting zeal without the possibility of seized assets plumping the budget?

  7. Cynthianne Says:

    I'm sure that Major Kong's response was ironic, but shooting at the jack-booted thugs will get you killed.

    In San Diego a few years ago, the drug swat team burst unannounced into the wrong house, and the panicked householder, who thought he was being invaded by a criminal gang, shot at them. The swats were not injured (bullet-proof vests), but they wounded the householder. THEN they let him lie bleeding on the floor while they searched, despite his wife's pleas to call 911. When they realized they had the wrong house, and finally called an ambulance, the guy was dead. The family got a huge settlement from the city, which I am sure was a GREAT comfort. (sarcasm)

  8. bb in GA Says:

    We libertarian types are no good on airplanes (see Ed's philosophy) but we are w/ y'all on the ground. Absolutely hate the WOD.

    Per major Kong – check out Indiana's (you know…that Red State) new law about citizen's being able to shoot back at police who enter their home's by force when they get it wrong.

    Cynthianne says that's a prescription for getting killed. Probably right, but it might cause the constabulary to do their homework better…or not. Maybe just slap on an extra layer of body armor.

    //bb

  9. JohnR Says:

    "..it became clear that Obama cannot run a Walmart. In addition he was a racist, mean and his supporters developed the famous CDS (Clinton Derangement Symptom). "

    Ah, MS – it must be nice on whatever planet you live. Or, maybe not, seeing that you visit us here on Earth so much.

  10. mel in oregon Says:

    never have been a fan of police. it's true obama to be very charitable is incompetent. more to the point, he has never given a shit about anyone but the wealthy, look at his cabinet, full of wallstreet people, including holder, & clinton retreads. interesting his former law professor unger who was an adviser in his 2008 campaign, now says he must go. romney is at best deluded, to be honest he is a charlatan & so out of touch he makes bush the elder seem enlightened. cops are never your friend, don't be a fool & think otherwise, in a just society, anyone putting a gun to the head of an 11 year old would do a long stretch in the big house.

  11. Major Kong Says:

    @bb

    Once you get out of Indianapolis and Bloomington, Indiana is the kind of red state that makes Texans scratch their heads and go "Dayum! You people sure are conservative!"

  12. Southern Beale Says:

    This is worth keeping in mind when someone tells you that Republicans aren't going to vote for Romney. Are they excited about him? Of course not. Will they get over it? For the most part, yes.

    Yes and no. For the most part you are correct but I think the Mormon thing will be a non-starter for a lot of the Bible banging base. I live in the buckle of the Bible belt. I just find it hard to believe that some of these fundies will go Mormon. There's gonna have to be some serious fearmongering — Justice Sundays I, II, III, IV & V — before they will go for the crazy polygamist cult guy.

  13. bb in GA Says:

    @Southern Beale

    And that's our President's route back to the WH with him running 200 mph, his ass hanging out, and his hair on fire sliding in the front gate.

    About 10 – 20% of the Rs are Paulistas. They will be dissed by the Establishment in August. Also, some significant percentage of that group will not vote for Mr Romney who they believe is a tool of the globalist elite conspiracy.

    About what percent of the R base are Mormonophobic?

    Those two deficits in particular are the seam in the R's zone defense.

    In a close election, if y'all can get your turn out going on – BHO wins.

    //bb

  14. Xynzee Says:

    @bb:
    "…with him running 200 mph, his ass hanging out, and his hair on fire sliding in the front gate."

    You're thinking of Richard Pryor who "…did the 100m in 4.3…" after setting himself on fire ;-)

    To hear tell, not many on this side of the fence are thrilled about Obama, but we're still voting for him as he's "what we're saddled with."

    The question is a matter of attrition of stay at home protest voters. Will more of theirs overcome their biases and fears by the idea of 4 more "Dark" years, than ours PO'd over Gitmo? Will those who do vote be persuaded that the dysfunctional political situ effect on the economy is the GOP sabotaging Obama? What will be the effects of Jim Crow 2 on Get Out the Vote?

    Stay tuned for this episode of Soap.

  15. Bernard Says:

    the way Democrats never respond to Republican attacks proves how easy it will be create enough fear of "voter fraud" to keep Obama's voters away. and of course, the sanctity of the "electronic" ballot will always be there, just in case.

    watching Obama suck up to the Republicans on tax cuts, and watch "Mormonism vs Christianity" a la Romney, this election will be interesting. to see if Obama does anything other than show the "deer in the headlights" look to Republicans and their usual dirty tricks and endless propaganda from Fox.

    and to think the war in Iran awaits sometime regardless of the election. What fun America has in store for its' citizens.
    Fleecing Americans is a lucrative business.

  16. Da Moose Says:

    That every single agent does not lose their jobs immediately after a raid like this speaks to who really owns this government: a bunch of jackbooted meatheads. These incidents are so completely outrageous and inexcusable.

  17. Ruthie Says:

    Cynthianne: While we're recounting horror stories: A few years back in Saratoga, CA the local DEA SWAT team burst into the home of a Japanese couple who spoke very little English, and proceeded to rip up what they believed to be marijuana plants in the back yard. By the time the neighbors heard the commotion and could get through to the LEOs that they had just ripped up a tomato garden, the farmette was pretty much decimated. Proving once again that bar for intelligence required for most law enforcement jobs is pretty low.

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