Senior fires at police during raid and lives!


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HarryB
December 22, 2006, 07:27 PM
http://www.eastvalleytribune.com/index.php?sty=81031

December 22, 2006
Family seeks justice for botched police raid
By Nick Martin
Tribune


Sonia Celaya stared at the ground, her hands smudged with black, her face hard. The Phoenix house her parents lived in for 35 years stood behind her, gutted and charred. It smelled of water and burned wood. She had been living there, too, and everything she and her parents owned was destroyed.

For this, she blamed Gilbert and Scottsdale police.

"One of my neighbors (called and) said they were throwing bombs at my dad," the 43-yearold woman said Thursday.

The night before, Gilbert SWAT team members, with Scottsdale police's help, broke through the windows and front door of the house using flashbang grenades to distract anyone inside. They came with a warrant in hand to search for items stolen by a 23-year-old suspect they consider dangerous.

Instead, they found Celaya's 73-year-old father, Salvador, a man suffering from Alzheimer's disease and diabetes. He shot at the officers thinking they were robbers invading the house, she said.

Also inside were Celaya's 69-year-old mother, Carlota, who suffers from cancer, and 26-year-old nephew Ronnie Vance. As the commotion erupted, the pair took cover.

Before breaking in, officers knocked and used a loud speaker to announce they were serving a warrant, said Gilbert police spokesman Sgt. Andrew Duncan.

Celaya said if that's true, her parents and nephew have told her they didn't hear it.

Within a couple minutes of the announcement, flames appeared in a bedroom of the house at 6802 S. Eighth St. The flash-bang grenades, which are nonlethal explosives often used in SWAT situations, likely set the house ablaze, Celaya said.

Phoenix Fire Department investigators have yet to determine the cause.

Duncan said neither the SWAT team nor firefighters could get near the house while Celaya's father was still carrying the gun.

Officers used a beanbag gun and tear gas to try to drive Salvador Celaya out of the house while it burned. Eventually, he ran out to the backyard, where police tackled him and took the gun.

And then, the house was fully engulfed. No one was hurt, but the house was destroyed. Damage was estimated at $150,000.

"It is very unfortunate that the house burned," Duncan said. "Our officers used extreme restraint in dealing with a man that was firing at officers."

"This is wrong," Sonia Celaya said. "They threw my parents on the street as if they were criminals."

Police briefly detained everyone after the incident. Salvador Celaya was taken to a police station for questioning. He was released soon after, but Phoenix police are investigating the shooting.

So what led Gilbert and Scottsdale police to the Phoenix house in the first place? Police have not said if either the Celayas or Vance, the nephew, are suspected of crimes and none have been arrested.

But both police departments have been investigating several crimes they believe are connected to one man: Erasmo Ruiz Villarreal, 23.

Earlier this week near the house, police found a Cadillac Escalade sport utility vehicle they believe Villarreal had stolen Sunday during a home invasion in Scottsdale, according to Scottsdale police spokesman Sgt. Mark Clark. And a truck used in the crime was registered to the Phoenix house, Clark said.

Moreover, "other investigative sources" pointed to the house as a place where police could find stolen goods from a Gilbert burglary Villarreal is suspected of, Clark said.

Sonia Celaya said the truck that was registered to the house is hers, but it was in the repair shop Sunday and it had not been stolen or missing.

Villarreal is a suspect in a carjacking, kidnapping, aggravated assault and home invasion. Police believe he was helped by one or two people in each crime. They consider him dangerous. Gilbert police ask anyone with information on him or the case to call (480) 503-6500.

The Celayas are staying with Sonia's brother, a lawyer, in Tempe. They are considering legal recourse against the police departments, she said.

As is standard with any police shooting, the Gilbert Police Department's Office of Professional Standards will conduct an inquiry to determine if proper procedures were followed, Duncan said.

Thursday afternoon, Gilbert police revisited the site, raking through the house's remains for signs of the stolen goods. Duncan didn't know whether anything was found.

Sonia Celaya was not home when the incident took place, but she said she wished she had been there to try to prevent what happened.

"Thirty-five years they've been here," she lamented. "Thirty-five years."

Before the fire, the family was getting ready for Christmas - and Celaya's 44th birthday on Dec. 27. "Happy birthday," she said bitterly.
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El Tejon
December 22, 2006, 07:42 PM
When will police be able to use a super-secret investigatory device such as, oh, I don't know, the telephone?:rolleyes:

Dial up the telephone number and say, "Yo, is IceDawg (or Chewy, VataLoco, Cledus Lee, or whatever) up in your crib?"

If he is, you go and arrest him; if not you knock on the door and say "search warrant, have a seat in the chair." My guys get arrested by getting thrown out of bars across the street from the courthouse or driving around without license plates while smoking a jay (both really happened). Are we really this concerned with budgets that we have to play mall ninja and with big boy toys?:uhoh:

Police are "raking through the debris" in order to find something? Great googley moogley, why are you rubbing the family's face in it, Chief Wiggum? Not only do they burn down a man's home they have to desecrate the grave?

The police used "extreme restraint", Chief Wiggum? Hello, McFly, you burned his *&^%$# house down to cinders and then shot a grandfather with your beanbag toy.

The article says the family is considering civil action--I would hope so!:scrutiny: As well, I hope the citizens of Gilbert show up at their next city council meeting and pitch a royal fit. I hope both state and federal prosecutors follow up on this. Unbelievable, flashbangs for a "search warrant." This stuff must stop.

pcosmar
December 22, 2006, 08:17 PM
It seems to be just another "Isolated Incident".
I wonder how many incidents it will take to be common rather than isolated.

I also found this, http://www.theclairefiles.com/Personal/houseraid.html While doing a search for this story. An interesting read.

Five Die in Wrong House Raid

The very angry and very brave Mike Kemp gave me the idea for this one. He's the Gadsden Minuteman who videotaped and exposed the blatant racism at the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms "Good Old Boys" rally. For that act of principle and courage, he ended up being targeted by law enforcement, eventually subjected to a warrantless raid, and sent to jail for using medical marijuana.

Mike had just gotten out of jail and was in a bitter mood when the events occurred that inspired this story

Handgun Midas
December 22, 2006, 08:23 PM
Our officers used extreme restraint in dealing with a man that was firing at officers."Not so much with the house, though. No, we burned that one right to the ground. Oops."

Awesome that the innocent old man didn't get shot and only had his house burned down.

This is an every-week occurance.
When is the nation-wide backlash going to come?

MechAg94
December 22, 2006, 08:24 PM
And this search warrant was so important that they have not even arrested the sons they were investigating? That right there should tell you this smells. If they were just searching for stolen property, why did they need a SWAT assault on the house?

I assume that neighbors could back up the claim about using a loud speaker? How much time between the announcement and the attempted entry? If it was less than 5 minutes, it might as well be a no-knock IMHO.

Fosbery
December 22, 2006, 08:27 PM
How can police possibly justify FLASHBANGING a house before determining exactly what and who was inside? Especially in a non-emergency situation like this (no hostages, no terrorists etc).

I you've ever seen the Iranian Embassy siege video where the SAS use flashbangs you'll know that those things are no joke.

TexasRifleman
December 22, 2006, 08:29 PM
No no, these things never actually happen.

By post #10 someone will be along to tell you why......

MechAg94
December 22, 2006, 08:34 PM
Apparently, the old man didn't actually hurt anyone by shooting.

I have to ask the police and the judge: Was this SWAT raid worth putting their officers at risk? If a police officer had been injured or killed, would they still think it was worth it? They haven't even arrested the kid they suspected of working with the real criminal they are after (sounds reasonable right?).

Maybe some police getting hurt would force them to question their procedures on these cases, but I would not want to wish that on anyone. Eventually, police are going to get killed over this silly crap though and for very little benefit.

Master Blaster
December 22, 2006, 09:01 PM
SWAT Teams are very expensive. Money for equipment, money for training, time off the regular job for training and exercises. The teams were envisioned as being needed to deal with the increasingly well armed and violent drug offenders that the police were dealing with. You know the well armed well organized extremely violent offenders holed up in an urban fortress like in Scarface:confused: :eek: The problem is that there just aint enough of these well armed fortresses to keep the SWAT guys busy. So when they go before the number crunchers to ask for X million dollars to fund SWAT, those darn beancounters ask questions like how many times did you deploy this year....

So since the need for SWAT is relatively rare in most small and medium sized cities, they need to find a use for the SWAT Guys.

Mission creep, and the result is that if you use a heavily armed highly trained band of soldiers to serve warrants and make routine arrests, some folks are just gonna get shot, dogs will get shot, houses will get burned down etc.

Military Tactics designed for a battlefield, have no place in police work 99.99% of the time.

We need to deploy all of our SWAT teams to Iraq where they can put their trainning to an appropriate use, against a heavily armed violent adversary.

clt46910
December 22, 2006, 10:18 PM
I agree with Master Blaster...we have too much a military mind set with most our police today. They are peace officers, not elite military units. It seems that any hint of possible violence requires a full attack. There is the possibility of violence everyday....even for us civilians...but we are not allowed to have the tools to protect ourselves most the time. But our peace officers are allowed to use extreme measures for minor offenses because they feel threaten?

They do deal with the bottom of the barrel in people most the time, but that is what they signed up for. If they can not handle it then get out of it. I do have friends in law enforcement...a large number of them agree things are getting out of hand. I know a lot of good people get out of law enforcement because of the attitude of the law enforcement agencies not the stress of the job.

Then again I am rather opinionated about things....but I have had to deal with the news media in the pass...and know that I would never believe anything I read or hear from a news agency

Handgun Midas
December 22, 2006, 10:26 PM
Was this SWAT raid worth putting their officers at risk?...
Eventually, police are going to get killed over this silly crap though and for very little benefit.No! The primary question is was this SWAT raid worth putting the lives of citizens at risk?

At an almost weekly basis the answer the police forces across the nation give us is "Yes."

Enough wrong houses have been bashed in and enough innocent people have been slain by
an institution that is supposed to be protecting them.

As screwed up as that already is, it would be irrevocably more so if it is the death of an
official home invader that finally brings the shock and outrage to the boiling point.

Langenator
December 22, 2006, 10:35 PM
As far as I can tell, this is the sum total of their basis for raiding the house:

-a Cadillac Escalade they think was stolen was "near the house" at some point, which means it was probably parked somewhere on the block.

-a truck they think was connected (no word of how they connected it). But the truck registered there was in the shop on the day of the crime (maybe the plates were "borrowed"? Or someone faked the address on their registration?) Did they bother to check the name on the registration, maybe?

-"other investigative sources"-meaning criminals trying to get a better deal for themselves by ratting on someone else.

Did they ever bother to check, say, property records to figure out who owned the place, and if they had any known connection to their suspect? Notice that nowhere in the article do they state that the suspect was related to the homeowners.

ChiefThunderstick
December 22, 2006, 10:51 PM
Seems that we are not all created equal. If someone is murdered, lots of times the punishment is slight. When an LEO is killed, well you know... Society is wrong in believing that any individual no matter what occupation has any more worth than another. I don't think Bono or Oprah are special or have any intellect worthy of the attention they get. I hope they rebuild grandpa's house even better than it was before and that mistakes of this nature are not repeated.

Dienekes
December 22, 2006, 11:07 PM
Been retired about thirteen years now--but eventually I got tired of the "war on drugs" nonsense and told my supervisor that if he wanted me out on raids he had only to order me to and I would go--but I was all done "volunteering". His response was that if I didn't want to go they didn't want me along.

Took care of that problem.

Personally I think anyone who does drugs is a moron and a loser; but that's a cultural problem, not a military one. And the government isn't the solution to that...

thexrayboy
December 23, 2006, 12:20 AM
Just one of hundreds, perhaps thousands, of episodes that takes place in Americea each year. And each one of these military styled raids is a slap in the face of freedom. America is no longer a free country. When uncivil servants can act this way with impunity no one can say with a straight face that we are a free country. Since it's obvious that the law enforcement community in America has no respect for the constitution, freedom or the rights of Americans I think it's time to start looking at a national referendum to seek a way to ban this type of activity. These military wanna be raids have little to no value in the war on crime but are dangerous in the extreme to citizens. Even if we have to take it to a Constitutional Amendment level we need to make this behavior stop. Oops, I forgot, we have an amendment allowing me to own any kind of gun I want yet the Feds and the police violate it on a daily basis. I guess laws to stop these raids would be ignored just as effectively.

Masterblaster has it right when he points out the fact that these teams are used more and more often due to the beaurocratic mindset of the bean counters. As is so often the case in politics, money is handed out based upon how much money you spent on something the year before. If you spent all your $ you get more this year. If you did not spend all your $ you must not need it and your budget is cut. This only serves as an incentive to use these teams at every opportunity to justify asking for more and more taxpayer money so that they can keep these cancerous raid teams active and growing. And guess who gets to pay for this mentality.....the average citizen pays. First with higher taxes and now, more frequently than ever with blood.

denfoote
December 23, 2006, 01:35 AM
It looks like the JBT of the NWO are here in our fair valley!! :mad:

Autolycus
December 23, 2006, 02:52 AM
So they burned down the mans house on accident? Then they cant find any evidence? They saw a car near the house that may have been stolen only to find that the houses owners have the same make of car? Then they claim to have used loud speakers to inform the man they are going to kick his door in and throw flashbangs which set the house on fire. After the man defended his house the heroic officers tackled the disabled senior citizen as he fled into his backyard to the fact they lit his house on fire. And now they are going to investigate it?

Perhaps they should really take an objective look at things and hire an objective investigative team that will treat this completely impartially.

No_Brakes23
December 23, 2006, 03:00 AM
That's a damn shame. Another "isolated incident", no doubt. I am surprised this thread hasn't been locked yet.

Zoogster
December 23, 2006, 03:15 AM
Well I am glad that even after grenading the house burning and smoking everyone out that nobody was killed while deaf with ringing ears and confused after they got the wrong house. That is something to be proud of, they actualy let the person live that they mistakenly raided who tried todefend themselves. If he had died I am sure he would have had to be villified much more severely to make up for the accident. In fact it would have probably been him that started the fire in that case, just like Waco, trapped people in standoffs always try to burn themselves to death, what is wrong with them!?

razorburn
December 23, 2006, 03:40 AM
At least everyone's alive and well. Homes can be rebuilt. Though it's certainly going to be a sorry Christmas for that family. It is rather remarkable that they didn't kill the grandfather when he shot at them, they showed some restraint there. But it would've been better if they'd shown restraint much earlier in the process, before deciding to send out a swat team. I think an earlier poster had it right, with them seeking out excuses to use the team more frequently in order to justify budget expenses. I hope the family makes those counters feel it when they file a suit to reclaim the full value of their home and possessions that were destroyed, and then some for the suffering they endured.

cassandrasdaddy
December 23, 2006, 04:13 AM
the only one found a guy with altheimers and a gun to be not the greatest situation

crashresidue
December 23, 2006, 04:44 AM
OK, it's late Friday night - and I've had a few cocktails. Be warned!

The problem here isn't the LEO's kicking in the door - it's the departmental leaders that are at fault!

I understand the guys doing the "kick-in"- they are just following orders, one's that they beileve are "justified".

The "problem" is with the department! I know a bunch of cops, and all of them are pretty good guys - now their Chiefs and assistant Chiefs are the problem. Very few are "mustangers" - they didn't work their way up the chain of command, they got appointed "politically". See the problem here?

The only cop I'll diss is that one from CA that tackeled the old woman in NO. He should be drug out by his b#lls and shot. If you're too stupid to understnd the Bill of Rights, then you have NO business as a Law Officer!

Yes, this was a bad situation - but it wasn't the "kickers" fault - it came down from FAR above.

That's the problem.

Gentle winds,
cr

Molon Labe
December 23, 2006, 09:15 AM
Criminals with badges.

Too bad Salvador didn't have better aim.

1911 guy
December 23, 2006, 09:34 AM
Move along, nothing to see.

I wonder about the alzheimers thing myself. It may be quite possible that this gentleman had far more real world experience than the po-po (WW II?) and his sixty year old instincts didn't ALLOW the cops to shoot him. Maybe Mr. Salvadore made better use of cover than the average grandmother.

And maybe I'm nitpicking, but where is the acountability? I've never been a cop, but I have done some work for Uncle Sam, jobs that got me out from behind my desk. Nothing was done without full briefing, everybody's questions answered. Where are the half-way intelligent people on these raids who ask a question or two before shooting up the elderly?

Oh yeah, IBTL.

Spot77
December 23, 2006, 09:57 AM
Military Tactics designed for a battlefield, have no place in police work 99.99% of the time.



I agree. It would also seem that the use of flashbangs has no place in law enforcement issues of relatively minor significance. Stolen property? Jeez. Multiple murderer or serial rapist might justify it........

The problem here isn't the LEO's kicking in the door - it's the departmental leaders that are at fault!


I agree it's not entirely the officers' fault. It's OUR fault for allowing operations like this to become standard operating procedure. It's the legislatures' faults, the courts' faults, and Americans' faults. We tolerate it.

Oh yeah, IBTL.

Inevitably.

1911 guy
December 23, 2006, 10:06 AM
Spot77 said:
I agree it's not entirely the officers' fault. It's OUR fault for allowing operations like this to become standard operating procedure. It's the legislatures' faults, the courts' faults, and Americans' faults. We tolerate it.

Oh, we complain about it, but get told to STFU because we're not professional enough to critique our public servants.

Fosbery
December 23, 2006, 10:07 AM
Oh I do hope this guy sues the police department. Goodbye:

Forensics lab
Dog team
Helicopter
Police station
Cars
Computers
Equipment
Uniforms
Wages

B.D. Turner
December 23, 2006, 10:15 AM
After working public service for the past 25 years (police, sheriff, EMS, and Fire department) I can say one thing for sure. The press is less than 40% accurate in reporting the news. I have been involved in incidents that they screwed up the story on so much you wonder if it happened or if you were even there. Do not believe everything you read in a local news paper. Some of the most liberal people you will ever meet work for these news services.

Daemon688
December 23, 2006, 10:22 AM
So it was a lie the house burned down from the flash bang? The old man did it? They actually targeted the right house? What 40% of this news story is accurate then?

Things that would be undisputable:
Cops + wrong house + old man + burnt down house + bean bagged family members = LAWSUIT. I hope they get lots of money.

Manedwolf
December 23, 2006, 10:25 AM
Oh I do hope this guy sues the police department. Goodbye:

Forensics lab
Dog team
Helicopter
Police station
Cars
Computers
Equipment
Uniforms
Wages

I could care less. They need to learn to rein in their tactical ninjas, or they lose their toys for a while. They get them back when they start behaving like officers of the peace, not like paramilitary troops.

This was goodbye:

House
Furniture
Irreplaceable Heirlooms
Papers
Relics
Scrapbooks
Children's Drawings
Trophies
A Lifetime of Memories
and ALMOST goodbye to the two people inside!

Does it have to happen to you before it's not okay?

hammer4nc
December 23, 2006, 10:38 AM
Lots of people have sued police depts. and been awarded million dollar settlements. Never has this resulted in the decrease of any LE budgetary resources. Often, just the opposite happens; police given budget increases, to prevent the mistake from occurring again. Individual police officers are protected by sovereign immunity in most cases. If they screw up really bad, they might get fired.

Pretty poor system for behavior modification, eh?

IBTL:cool:

Fosbery
December 23, 2006, 11:41 AM
Manedwolf, I wasn't being sarcastic. I DO hope he sues. If the department is going to act like that then it dosn't deserved uniforms or wages or anything. I was merely pointing out that considering he lost the entire house, was trapped inside a burning building, was shot at, was possibly beanbagged, was tackled to the ground etc and considering his old age and his medical condition, he will get a HUGE pay out thus quite possibly depriving the department of those things.

TeachMe
December 23, 2006, 11:49 AM
Trying to compensate for poor police work by heavy-handed tactics just makes a bad situation worse.

Molon Labe
December 23, 2006, 12:25 PM
Another thing to remember: a SWAT's budget is determined by "need."

Every year a city must review the previous year's services and expenditures. "How much money are we bringing in? What programs need to be cut? What programs need to be increase? What services & programs are productive, and which are wasteful?"

If a city allocated big $ to fund a SWAT that was rarely used, the city will conclude the SWAT team is not needed and slash (or eliminate) its budget. Therefore, a SWAT has a vested interest in conducting as many raids as possible... it justifies their existence.

In addition to the SWAT conducting as many raids as possible to justify its existence, raids are conducted because it's fun. At least this is what my LEO buddy tells me. He said most members of their SWAT team get a real thrill out of conducting raids, and they brag about their exploits in the locker room the following day. :rolleyes:

Pilgrim
December 23, 2006, 12:27 PM
I've never been a cop, but I have done some work for Uncle Sam, jobs that got me out from behind my desk. Nothing was done without full briefing, everybody's questions answered. Where are the half-way intelligent people on these raids who ask a question or two before shooting up the elderly?
Years ago, when I was a reserve deputy sheriff, I stopped an ambitious sergeant from doing something incredibly stupid.

An anonymous informant called the department and said two bank robbers wanted in Los Angeles were staying at one of the county's flea bag hotels. The sergeant was ready to go kicking in the door and arrest these criminals. As I listened to his quick briefing for the festivities, I started asking questions.

How do we know we have the right room?
Are they there?
Has any one called LAPD and see if they really want these guys?
If they are the right guys, and they are there, and LAPD wants them, what do we do about all the guests living all around their room, especially if they are well armed and want to fight?

The sergeant thought about it, then decided he had better make some phone calls. While doing this, he sent a deputy in plain clothes to ask around. The deputy did a 'knock and talk' and discovered the 'robbers' were just wetbacks in town to look for work.

The sergeant called LAPD and found they knew nothing about any bank robbers hiding in our county.

Just a few questions is all it takes.

Pilgrim

griz
December 23, 2006, 01:22 PM
Assuming the article is accurately reporting what the police said:

Is it normal to use a bullhorn to announce the raid THEN use flashbangs? I don't see the logic in that unless you just really like to see them go off.

Still 2 Many Choices!?
December 23, 2006, 01:48 PM
I don't understand the need for the Swat Style entry at all(not that I think it would be justified if it was a drug raid). My point is that no knock drug raids get justified because of the ,"possibility", that evidence ,"might", be destroyed. What were they going to do, start flushing the stolen goods down the toilet:confused: ? Even if the person that was allegedly involed with the original theft was considered a dangerous person(or whatever), more intel would have prevented this scenario from ever having to occur. Perform a high risk stop on the guy as he leaves or something, then serve the warrant by simply knocking and presenting it. This is sad all around. What a Merry Christmas for these poor folks:banghead: !

.45&TKD
December 23, 2006, 02:11 PM
raids are conducted because it's fun. At least this is what my LEO buddy tells me. He said most members of their SWAT team get a real thrill out of conducting raids, and they brag about their exploits in the locker room the following day.

I think this is the wrong mindset for this line of work.

As a martial artist and shooter, I enjoy training to fight, but would not actually enjoy hurting other people in a real fight. I train so I don't have to fight, as most of us here do. I think this is true for most of our armed forces, as well.

Anybody that enjoys SWAT tactics against civilians on a regular basis, should be excluded from that line of work, for the simple reason that they like something that should be abhorent to the normal well adjusted person.
These tactics should be a last resort in extreme cases.

If they really like it that much, let them train on their own time, with no pay, (like we do) in addition to their regular police duties. That would take care of the budgetary justifications, and still have trained people for those rare emergencies.

TrybalRage
December 23, 2006, 02:18 PM
Don't police do stakeouts anymore? You know, watch who's coming and going?

:confused: :confused:

dasmi
December 23, 2006, 02:33 PM
Another isolated incident, right?
http://www.cato.org/raidmap/

Sindawe
December 23, 2006, 02:41 PM
I ran across this phrase a few years ago being sported in the sig file of a member of a California PD , sadly with each passing day it is becoming more and more a statement of fact than a humorous jest. :uhoh:

Hobie
December 23, 2006, 02:47 PM
The problem here isn't the LEO's kicking in the door - it's the departmental leaders that are at fault!

I understand the guys doing the "kick-in"- they are just following orders, one's that they beileve are "justified".
Just following orders. Yep, justification for the little guy.

Firethorn
December 23, 2006, 07:59 PM
Don't police do stakeouts anymore? You know, watch who's coming and going?

You know, you're right. It doesn't even have to be a 'manned' stakeout. Especially in today's world, it should be the easiest thing in the world to mount a couple cameras around a neighborhood(temporarily, at least with a warrant) to watch a single house.

24 hours should be enough to give you a 90% accurate estimate of who's inside. Give it a week and you can be 99% certain.

With today's technology, you wouldn't have to spend 24 man-hours minimum to watch a place 24 hours/day. A little motion detection equipment/software in the package and you'd only have to review the bits with significant movement, perhaps 1-5 hours/day. You could practically fast forward through that.

How about this for an idea: Establish a 'compensation' fund for each police department. Each time the police cause damage to an innocent party, or even damage in excess of possible criminal penalties*, it would be paid for out of this fund.

At the end of the year, the remaining fund is divied up and paid to the individual officers and personel. Now, I had the idea of cutting the fund in half, where half is divied out to individual officers and supervisors, and any deductions for damages come out of their share first, then the departmental share, before finally going to unrelated individual shares again. That way good officers can still get their bonus, even if one officer screws up(at least not monumentally).

*Burning somebody's house down then 'finding' the stub of a MJ cigarette in the back yard would be 'in excess'. Knocking out a bit of drywall in a house to find 20 kilos of cocaine isn't.

SoCalShooter
December 23, 2006, 08:31 PM
Flashbangs and tear gas are very effective tools in police raids. Unfortunetly they have been documented to cause many house fires during a raid. Unintentionally of course but they can definetly make a hostile entry a little easier.

Back on topic,it does seem odd they would not try and call the house and verify the suspect is there especially when they have the neighborhood surrounded. And yes a shootout could have occurred but a SWAT team should be much better armed than a single suspect...cant say that however for any members on here who may be better armed than their locale SWAT.:neener:

ChiefThunderstick
December 23, 2006, 08:42 PM
LOL, no knock raids to preserve evidence. They would have destroyed any by burning the house down.

Spreadfire Arms
December 23, 2006, 08:45 PM
several people asked about the use of flashbangs for just "stolen property." for clarification, the wanted person (who was not at this residence) was supposedly a suspect for: "carjacking, kidnapping, aggravated assault and home invasion." all of those are violent felonies. that's not to say the cops hit the wrong house, or did not do their homework prior to serving this warrant.

however, the rationale for using the flashbangs appears to be listed in the news story:

They came with a warrant in hand to search for items stolen by a 23-year-old suspect they consider dangerous.


Earlier this week near the house, police found a Cadillac Escalade sport utility vehicle they believe Villarreal had stolen Sunday during a home invasion in Scottsdale, according to Scottsdale police spokesman Sgt. Mark Clark. And a truck used in the crime was registered to the Phoenix house, Clark said.


Villarreal is a suspect in a carjacking, kidnapping, aggravated assault and home invasion. Police believe he was helped by one or two people in each crime. They consider him dangerous.

i'd say that if i was asked to go arrest someone who was a suspect in several violent felonies, and i had the option to use a flashbang or two in order to distract him while i could safely take him into custody (providing i was at the right place) then i think given the circumstances, i'd have used the flashbangs too.

ceetee
December 23, 2006, 09:36 PM
...most members of their SWAT team get a real thrill out of conducting raids, and they brag about their exploits in the locker room the following day.

That's true. I've seen it, heard it, and even (rarely) been a part of it, in another part of my life.


I think this is the wrong mindset for this line of work.

As a martial artist and shooter, I enjoy training to fight, but would not actually enjoy hurting other people in a real fight. I train so I don't have to fight, as most of us here do. I think this is true for most of our armed forces, as well.

Anybody that enjoys SWAT tactics against civilians on a regular basis, should be excluded from that line of work, for the simple reason that they like something that should be abhorent to the normal well adjusted person.

That's also true. BUt the kind of person most qualified to do the work is least interested in doing it. This same attitude could be applied to every facet of "public service", from cop to President. Invariably, those most qualified for the job have the least desire to take it on. (And vice-versa.)

MechAg94
December 23, 2006, 10:08 PM
Spreadfire, from the article is sounded like there was very little reason to think the suspect you mention was actually at that house. A stakeout would have been much more effective.

marshall3
December 23, 2006, 10:13 PM
The suit needs to be for an outrageous sum, and if they win, it will stop all these raids in a trice. 100 million would do it.

pcosmar
December 23, 2006, 10:23 PM
Being that ": Erasmo Ruiz Villarreal, 23." did not live there, and there is no indication that he was ever there, I wonder how a warrant was obtained.
Could it be another "anonimous source" with a tip.

"Moreover, "other investigative sources" pointed to the house as a place where police could find stolen goods from a Gilbert burglary Villarreal is suspected of, Clark said."

Good work guys. Villarreal is still at large.

thegriz
December 23, 2006, 11:18 PM
Screw the lawsuit - I would like to see the responsible parties (officers who threw the flashbangs, ordered the flashbangs, authorized policy allowing flashbangs) brought up on criminal charges.

Any civilian who did something so outrageous, stupid and dangerous would be sitting in cell right now chatting with their defense attorney.

Spreadfire Arms
December 23, 2006, 11:49 PM
MechAg94 wrote:

Spreadfire, from the article is sounded like there was very little reason to think the suspect you mention was actually at that house. A stakeout would have been much more effective.

you're right. details are fuzzy but im not even sure how the warrant got signed.

cassandrasdaddy
December 24, 2006, 12:16 AM
http://www.azcentral.com/community/gilbert/articles/1222gr-fire1222Z12.html

LightningJoe
December 24, 2006, 01:05 AM
Cops watch movies too. It's just plain old self-actualization. They learn how to be cool from watching shoot'em-ups and naturally try to make it work in real life. When all the movies you watch are about hammers...

1911 guy
December 24, 2006, 01:11 AM
I don't see how. The article you linked to gives no more or less information than was given at the beginning. The guy they were looking for wasn't there nor did they intend to arrest him if he was. They were just snooping with a judges consent. The house did not have to burn because they did not have to serve the warrant. There seems to be no definate cause for the warrant, so it shouldn't have been signed, given what we know at the moment.

Neither the original account nor this one gives any time frame from the supposed announcement by bullhorn and the forced entry.

Anyone who think flashbangs are incapable of starting a fire is a first class idiot. Not a common occurence, but how does Chief Wiggum know what it landed near in the bedroom?

Kali Endgame
December 24, 2006, 01:19 AM
The US Military is being criminalized for raids in a combat zone resulting in the deaths of civilians. Paramilitary police forces are killing US Citizens in eroneous raids.

Why are the police exempt from persecution, but the Military is vilified?

cassandrasdaddy
December 24, 2006, 01:38 AM
me for posting link to wrong article sorry
http://www.ktar.com/?nid=6&sid=297958


They said they were at the home because earlier in the week, they had found a Cadillac Escalade near the home they believe was stolen by 23-year-old Erasmo Ruiz Villarreal, Scottsdale police Sgt. Mark Clark said.


Clark said the Escalade was registered to the Phoenix home that was burned. Clark added that ``other investigative sources'' pointed to the house as a place where police could find stolen goods from a Gilbert burglary in which Villarreal is a suspect.

Sonia Celaya said the Escalade is hers, but that it was in the repair shop Sunday and had not been stolen or missing.

992
December 24, 2006, 09:05 AM
'Just follwing orders'.
Didn't some of Hitlers pals try to use that excuse at the end of WWII?
It didn't fly then, and it should work now,either.

992

Vitamin G
December 24, 2006, 09:58 AM
MP-5's = $10,000
Flashbangs = $500
Your former house = $150,000


Waiting until junior takes out the trash and arresting him quietly with minimal force, priceless...

BigFatKen
December 24, 2006, 10:27 AM
Back in the '60s some people arned themselves to protect themselves from abusive Los Angles LEOs.

The LEOs used the old style CS gernades and burned down the house with many in it.

I thought there were laws passed then to stop the use of gases that made fires when deployed. Waco only happened because the Christians were using dangerous candles. How was the tank operator to guess that afer the power was cut, they would burn candles?

ProficientRifleman
December 24, 2006, 10:30 AM
Yes, this was a bad situation - but it wasn't the "kickers" fault - it came down from FAR above.

Has anyone ever heard of the word "concience"?

Does right and wrong have a place here? Is it just a matter of, "What we can get away with....and, what we can't get away with...?

The Cops are always right. Even if what they did to you was wrong it was still the right thing to do. You have no business complaining, because YOU have never been a police officer. The poor Ba%$&rd should have complied, been submissive, obeyed.....

Our forefathers stood at Lexington and Concord so they wouldn't have to obey, comply and be submissive to an authority against which they had no recourse. They are rolling over in their graves these days. I am sure of it.

ProficientRifleman
December 24, 2006, 10:35 AM
From the Arizona Republic Newspaper article December 22nd....Duncan said due to standard safety precautions, police did not allow Phoenix Fire Department to fight the blaze, but firefighters were on standby.

Jeepers creepers...golly gee, that sounds familiar....where did I hear that before....?

gm
December 24, 2006, 12:45 PM
I found the listing of the residents medical conditions odd.Its my guess thats prvt information, that now the whole world can know.This is something professionals can and will be sued over.


Or perhaps its to justify the oops moment of doing the house and later burning it down?

cassandrasdaddy
December 24, 2006, 08:48 PM
" found the listing of the residents medical conditions odd.Its my guess thats prvt information, that now the whole world can know.This is something professionals can and will be sued over.


Or perhaps its to justify the oops moment of doing the house and later burning it down?"



really? you didn't think it was the daughter who mentioned it? the daughter that owned the car the cops say was stolen in the home invasion?

who do you envision being sued? for what?
shucks i must be a mean guy i figure that aside from the fire it was a good deal. no one got killed or hurt bad. inspite of the shots being fired they used bean bag rounds. so maybe whoever let the cops know saved the old mans bacon

pcosmar
December 24, 2006, 09:14 PM
cassandrasdaddy

"really? you didn't think it was the daughter who mentioned it? the daughter that owned the car the cops say was stolen in the home invasion?"

You don't read very well do you.

Her vehicle was not stolen.
No charges are filed against anyone in the house.
The guy they were looking for does not live there. They never heard of him.
They burned down the house of an inocent family.

Robert Hairless
December 24, 2006, 09:22 PM
shucks i must be a mean guy i figure that aside from the fire it was a good deal. no one got killed or hurt bad. inspite of the shots being fired they used bean bag rounds. so maybe whoever let the cops know saved the old mans bacon

All of these people whining and complaining: it was just one old man and he had Alzheimer's too. No harm, no foul, and the cops went home okay. It's a tough job, burning down people's homes, and they deserve support for doing it. Let's give them a big hand.

cassandrasdaddy
December 24, 2006, 09:23 PM
maybe you could try post 57 and the link there get back to us ith the next keen incisive analysis

Robert Hairless
December 24, 2006, 09:26 PM
cassandrasdaddy

"really? you didn't think it was the daughter who mentioned it? the daughter that owned the car the cops say was stolen in the home invasion?"

You don't read very well do you.

Her vehicle was not stolen.
No charges are filed against anyone in the house.
The guy they were looking for does not live there. They never heard of him.
They burned down the house of an inocent family.

Hey just because the guy can't read isn't any reason to put him on the spot. He can't write either, but let's give him credit for doing a lot of it.

SFvet
December 24, 2006, 09:27 PM
"Criminals with badges.

Too bad Salvador didn't have better aim".

Why do you say that? most Swat units are reserves just like myself, we dont get paid for our general details and those guys did everything by the reg. The screw-up was with the idiot who put the wrong address down.

LawDog
December 24, 2006, 09:30 PM
maybe you could try post 57 and the link there get back to us ith the next keen incisive analysis

You don't read very well do you.


Anyone who think flashbangs are incapable of starting a fire is a first class idiot.

Enough.

You know, I haven't mass banned members here in a long time. Hate to pull one of my patented sturm undt drang sessions on a Christmas day, but quite frankly, the level of incivility here makes it bloody well tempting.

LawDog

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