Law Enforcement: SWAT Run Amok

Two recent incidents involving SWAT teams are adding fuel to the fire in the emerging controversy over the routine use of such paramilitarized police units to prosecute the drug war. In Chicago, the Chicago Police Department has been hit with a $10 million lawsuit over a September raid on a social club. Meanwhile, in Florida, the Pembroke Pines Police Department Special Response Team, a SWAT-style unit, shot and killed a 46-year-old homeowner in a dawn raid June 13 that netted a whopping three-quarters of an ounce of marijuana.
SWAT team, Pasadena, Texas
(There is even more trouble on the SWAT front. Read blogger Scott Morgan's post about the murder prosecution of raid victim Derrick Foster and the killing of raid victim Gonzalo Guizan, here. is committed to ending these abuses. Sign our online petition here.)

In the Chicago raid, raw video of which is available here (part one) and here (part two), Chicago SWAT team officers dressed as if heading for combat in Baghdad hit the La Familia Motorcycle Club as it was being used for a birthday party. Officers exploded stun grenades, pointed assault weapons at people cowering in hallways, and, according to the attorney who filed the lawsuit, did so without producing a search warrant.

Attorney George Becker said police also stole $1,500 from amusement machines and $1,000 from a safe they broke open during the raid. Becker also said five women at the club were strip-searched by female officers in front of male officers and club patrons. Becker said those parts of the raid were not recorded because officers pointed surveillance cameras at the ceiling.

"It looked to me like the Chicago Police Department is engaging in military-type activity," said Becker after showing the raid video.

But police are unrepentant. "We believe the officers acted within department guidelines in executing the legal search warrant," Police Department spokeswoman Monique Bond said.

Although police said an informant had told them a shipment of drugs was destined for the building, they seized only a small quantity of drugs and one hand-gun. Two arrests were made -- one on a bond forfeiture warrant and one for reckless conduct.

Police in Pembroke Pines, Florida, are also unrepentant about their SWAT raid that left Victor Hodgkiss dead. Police have released few details about what exactly went down during the dawn raid, except to say they he was shot and killed after confronting them as they entered his home on a no-knock drug search warrant. The raid netted one arrest -- of the girlfriend of Hodgkiss's son, who was charged with possession of less than 20 grams of marijuana.

"We use SRT for all narcotics warrants," Pembroke Pines Deputy Police Chief David Golt told Ft. Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel columnist Mike Mayo, who wrote a scathing column denouncing the reflexive resort to SWAT-style tactics. "You never know what you're going to encounter."

As Mayo noted in his column: "In this case, a 46-year-old man with a concealed weapons permit and no record of violent crime encountered his demise in his home of 14 years."

Police did not say whether Hodgkiss was armed when he was shot, but they did say they recovered a weapon from the home.

The Hodgkiss killing bears eerie similarities with another Florida SWAT killing, the 2005 shooting death of Philip Diotaiuto, a 23-year-old bartender shot 10 times by officers after he grabbed a gun as they burst into his home in a dawn raid that netted little over an ounce of marijuana. No charges were ever filed against those officers, but a civil suit filed by Diotaiuto's family is pending.

In both cases, police were aware their target had a weapons permit and used that to justify their resort to SWAT team tactics. In both cases, people ended up being killed over trivial amounts of marijuana.

SWAT team policing excesses are nothing new, but seem to be on the upswing as the units, originally designed for hostage and other dangerous situations, are increasingly used routinely for drug search warrants and other law enforcement purposes. The Cato Institute's Radley Balko has compiled the primary source book for SWAT killings and other abuses, 2006's Overkill: The Rise of Paramilitary Police Raids in America.

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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swat team tatics

Seems like Cops on the swat teams being used for drug raids has taken lessons from the Gestopo shoot 1st ask quetions later. Either that or the police departments want to play with their new toys from the feds

From time to time the tree of liberty must be refreshed

...with the blood of patriots. The time is rapidly approaching when the people must stand up and fight or lie under the jackboot of oppression.

Do unto others

Everyone needs to read The Gulag Archipelago by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. In it he describes the only way this American horror will stop. When the Russian police did exactly what these arrogant and criminal thugs do he lamented from his cold rat infested cell (he was GLAD about the rats because they were a source of food!) that if only the cops were not secure with their own safety and that of their families, if only the population took out their anger on them and their families the cops would not continue their crime spree. If the cops feared that they would encounter armed and aggressive neighbors and that the cops families would pay for the crimes the cops committed then and only then would the terror cease.
In a simplistic description We The People must take back Liberty from this criminal government. Liberty cannot be given, it must be taken and held by force by an organized and ardent populace. These cops deserve death by the most painful of methods. If you commit a violent crime and go unpunished are you going to stop?
If you commit a violent crime and you AND your family dies as punishment what do you think that will do to the outlook of the other criminal cops AND their wives and children. Can you picture the divorce rate as the wives desert their criminal cop husbands? Can you picture the peace that will result when these criminals are eliminated? Are We The People human or sheep? If human do we not have the right AND duty to revenge against these criminals?

your comment

We need to have some way of knowing where each and every member of our police department lives. We need to know their names and addresses. And we need to have some way of identifying them even when they are fully clothed in their attack uniforms. This will take some doing, but I know of no alternative. A group can be organized, of like-minded citizens, to accomplish this. It will take time, but time is on our side.


For protestors to simply show at their homes or childrens schools or wives jobs would have an enormous impact.
Just making them aware of what daddy does for their food would make them wretch.
Our communities should practice the act of shaming those who do us wrong like back in the day.
We should publicly denounce these mindless thugs at every convenience. We should let them know how we think about them as well but we cant because interestingly enough, a finger or a naughty word is grounds for arrest, how convenient.(spray paint?)
Check this out. If you have seen the you tube for "dont talk to the police" you hear the cop lecturing say two very important things. First is "we say interview, the word interrogation conjures images of nazis and torture, we dont like that image." There you have it, they know what they do but dont want to think about,,,,,that way. So they insulate themselves from critism.
The second is where he says several times "people are really stoooooopid". he says this with a jackass chuckle. I have always known that police consider themselves secular and this is how they justify themselves. We good, everybody else bad. He reinforces it here with him telling how everyone outside his sphere is stoopid. Well he is right from his perspective because as a cop he realized what pieces of human filth he and his buddies are , so much so that we all have to be really really stoooooopid to have let these jackass' be "cops for us" in the first place.
He says one last thing that doesnt relate but id like to mention anyway and that is "police dont have to tell the truth, their is no law that says we have to tell the truth." hmmm put that on your breakfast toast.


America used to be the land of the free... What happened? Our constitution was picked apart piece by piece until all their is left are small bits and pieces...


ARE THEY GOING TO USE SWAT FOR TRAFFIC STOPS? They never know what they'll encounter on a traffic stop.

This drug war is a war waged against citizens. If you want a fight in America all you have to do is violate our rights. I'm hearing more and more people talk about fighting back with force. I think that's a bad idea but I see their point.





The USA spends $69 billion a year on the drug war, builds 900 new prison beds and hires 150 more correction officers every two weeks, arrests someone on a drug charge every 17 seconds, jails more people than any nation and has killed over 100,000 citizens in the drug war.


Everyone needs to know about “Jury Nullification”. You can learn more here: If you are called for jury duty and you don’t agree with the law the person is charged with, you have the right to vote NOT GUILTY, NO MATTER WHAT EVIDENCE IS PRODUCED. Jurors implementing this right in ALL NON-VIOLENT drug cases will shut down the ridiculous laws of prohibition.

There’s only been one drug success story in history, tobacco, BY FAR THE MOST DEADLY and one of the MOST ADDICTIVE drugs. Almost half the users quit because of REGULATION, ACCURATE INFORMATION AND MEDICAL TREATMENT. No one went to jail and no one got killed.

DEMAND your Constitutional rights. The right; to freedom of religion, free speech, a free press, to keep and bear arms, to be secure in your person, house, papers and effects against unreasonable search and seizure, to life, liberty and property, to be protected from having your property taken by the government without due process of law and without just compensation, to confront the witnesses against you, to be protected from excessive bail, excessive fines, cruel and unusual punishment, to vote and many others have been denied to millions of Americans in the name of the drug war.

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just say no to hypocritical alcohol supremacist laws

Jury nullification, mentioned in last post, is definitely proper under these circumstances. Honorable people should have no hesitation about lying about their views on the drug war, so that they are not peremptorily removed from consideration for jury duty. All the gov't is doing is shoving their weight around, refusing to engage in honest debate on the subject, so jury nullification is a moderate and wise way of shoving back. Only takes one determined person to deadlock a jury.


Lakies and Gentlemen, as one that's been placed in that unenviable position knows, The System KNOWS: "Dead Men Tell No Tales". Don't let yourself get in that position! Further, get the truth out to others and let's resist Tyranny by FIRING our "Good" civil servants, snction them civally & crimnally, & by LEGALLY STOP GIVING THEM FINANCIAL RESOUCES! I was taught 20 years ago that the best way to punish some body was to, "Take away their toys".

Just as it developed,

back during booze prohibition. The end of this crazyness will come after bloodshed on both sides exceeds tolerance of the voters. Of course the voters already knows this has gone way too far. The degenerated house of representatives is behind the curve on this and everything else.Eventually the blood will be too much to bear in the USA's longest running war. This shows why PROHIBITION IS THE GATEWAY TO TYRANNY!


Voting will not solve this problem.

Sad but true..

in order to make a point those with the balls must fight back with force. We are being manipulated into giving up our human instincts all in the name of technology and grandpa never did drugs but was a kid during alchol prohibition and people started to fight back,thats how it ended. 2000 civilions killed is ok by cops,kill 2000 cops and they might wake up and smell lies 4 the way who ever reads this dont go killing anyone,you can "kill" a cop in other ways without violence,say find once,tape his every move with a private eye and when he goes to the bar,gets drunk and drives. release it to the media....I dont promote violence but then again how was the civil war won? Satnd up and fight yo but dont murder cops,they are like little kids and to dumb to see the truth.Peace love and sex yall!

At least we are safe

Gotta fight refer madness.

refer madness

Dude thats pretty funny....

no ones safe

Everyone has forgotten it seems that the police as well as the goverment WORK FOR US, they are paid by our tax dollars, they are our employees nothing more, we as citizens MUST take action to put an end to this madness, WE are this country, WE own this country, WE pay for this boot on our neck with our hard earned dollars, WAKE UP PPL before you or your kids become a statistic, these nazi bastards need to learn were not having it anymore, if you really care about this country, your rights, or the pursuit of REAL justice, then we have to put these facists out of buisness.

Good Riddance

We need the police to kill more of these druggies.

We are lucky that the police care enough about us to perform these heroic acts.

Dopers are like terrorists, and they should be treated the same way. If the story said the swat raided a terrorist house and killed a terrorist you would all be cheering. What is the difference?
I am thankful that our savior George Bush is using our police this way, it's about time!
I am tired of being afraid to walk down the street, I wish a swat w/ a machine gun was on every corner in my neighborhood, checking papers, dress code, housing regulations, etc.

All you people talking about revolution are NUTS...LOL...the only thing the "people" of this country are willing to fight for is a place in the handout line. Revolution...that's funny. Didn't Ron Paul start a revolution? How's that working out?

You fascist jack-boot

You fascist jack-boot worshipping dick, we'll be coming for you next, little suburban chamber of commerce bitch!

Malkavian's picture

Dear Anonymous Coward

Considering the fact that nothing these "druggies" do qualify as a true crime (seeing as how they DO NOT infringe on the freedoms of other citizens) what is "heroic" about killing those people? They're not even proper criminals.

Proper criminals hurt other people or their property, or abstractly they infringe on the constitutional rights of others.

What is the proper term when someone outlaws a completely innocent and non-criminal activity? Some would call that a "victimless crime", but it is really more appropriately describes as Western Sharia. Why? Because the reason for outlawing the particular behavior is almost completely based on a moral, faith-based opinion that is in no way backed up by observable injury to other people.

Just like, you know, they stone, execute, maim and whip people for the crimes of adultery, converting someone from Islam to Christianity, being in the unsupervised company of non-family males (if you're a woman) and hanging even children for the "crime" of homosexuality. Those things go down pretty well in Iran and Saudi-Arabia.

They - the Muslims - simply call this Sharia, i.e. the implementation of the religious rules of the Quran into secular law. They're being really honest about that part and it's there for everyone to see. I can respect that even if I think it's thoroughly evil.

We are doing the same in every Western country, but we're just not entirely honest about just what we're doing.

So ... terrorists? Well, you Sir, certainly falls more with THAT range than the average "druggie". At least the druggies have an excuse, but what is YOUR excuse for being a lot less rational about this than the "druggies"?

I hope someone...

locks you up for being stupid.

Law Enforcement Run Amok?

American law enforcement began going bad long ago. Even before WWI had arrived on the scene came such amenities (sic) to freedom as the infamous Federal Reserve Act of 1913, which commended into the hands of our enemies the sole right to determine the value and denomination of the U.S. monetary unit; later, the graduated, un-apportioned income tax sham known as the Sixteenth Amendment, which was supposedly temporary. After WWI America was placed onto an even faster fast-lane to dictatorship with the combination of planned economic debasement (the Great Depression) and (under the traitorous F.D. Roosevelt) the forcing of the American public to surrender all gold coin and bullion. Under Eisenhower's presidency in 1954 came the confiscation of all silver coin of the realm and the printing of so-called Federal Reserve Notes which did not bear the redeemable-in-silver clause. At the same time, police and law enforcement agencies across the nation were being secretly transmogrified into all-Jewish-and-minority work forces—a long-held integer in the take-over scheme known as the (Marxo-Communist) Zionist Plan of the Elders. By the year 1960 radical change had become an impending blip on the event horizon, culminating after the assassination of JFK in the 1964 Civil Rights Act—and again in a 1968 modification of the latter, wherein Jews became lumped in with the white race-at-large, sans distinction as to ethnic, racial, sociological or (caustic) prejudicial differences which inhere in all Jews against gentiles and the white working class. Thus was the American founding race disenfranchised in its own native homeland. From the day the very Jewish LBJ signed CRA68 into law Jews began hiring ONLY OTHER JEWS, whenever and wherever Marxo-Communist Affirmative Action guidelines permitted a white to enter the workforce. Otherwise, Jews lock-stepped into the New Left workplace in droves thereafter through a greased and facile back gate known as Temple Employment. Today in Amerika, most, if not all police and law enforcement personnel are carefully chosen as Zionist Jews, Negroes, or, in the far Western states, Jewish Hispanics. Gentiles need not apply. The day of the white gentile policeman has been relegated to unspoken history. One brief glance at what the Zionist Jews of Israel are doing to the Palestinians and others among Israel's Arab/Islamic neighbors, will confer a powerful vision of the future game plan in store for all Americans. Israel. . . or more correctly stated, the Zionist central banksters of Amerika and Europe who OWN Israel—also own, lock, stock and barrel the U.S. Congress and the Jews' all-encompassing, rubber-stamped facist U.S. corporatocracy. They have it all their way in matters regarding control over U.S. citizens, and until we native sons and daughters finally develop the necessary moxy to stand up and say ENOUGH!! —there can and will be no restoration of the sacred constitutional freedoms stolen from us by the Rothschild-Rockefeller-Warberg puppets, Bush and Cheney, et al. Vide the old biblical saying, "He helps them who help themselves." M.

Whadda buncha shit.

"Head for the hills, the joooooooooooooooos are coming!!! Mooooooo!!!!!!"'

r u serious? most cops i

r u serious? most cops i see, and unfortunately, i see them more often than i would like thanx to prohibition the sequel, are very white gentile american crewcut jock toolboxes. where is this supposed majority of black and jewish cops?
do they have holo-projecters on their belts to appear gentile? or is it a conspiricy so vast that even I'M in on it?

Americans are nothing but lip service

Nothing is going to change until Americans get the yellow streak off their backs and start to fight back. Simple as that. So, until that time, live with it.

so true

Hey, you made a great observation. Maybe the police NEED to remeber that the can BLEED too?






We knew it was going to happen...

Haven't all of these swat teams been trained by those Nazi bastards from Blackwater? Big tough guys.


No. They are being trained by zionist anti defamation league.

We Are Family

You shall give life for life. Eye for eye, tooth for tooth.Hand for hand. Ex.21:23

SWAT Run Amok

Americans now need RPGs to satisfactorily defend themselves against their own government, especially as all cops are now patently criminals.

Yes: ALL cops.

Swat runs amok

Maybe its time to take the law into our own hands.
Maybe its time to hold them accountable.
Maybe its time to fight back and kill some of these Bas%@#ds.
This isn't NAZI germany, its America and a man is to be secure in his home and possessions according to the BOR.

This dayum police state must be stopped,.......there are 112 million "registered" gun owners who could make the change

This is a war for...

...your minds. Once the public see's, that it's prohibition that causes crime and corruption, they will see the true picture. The streets in the city are not safe because the price ,of some substances, is artificially inflated by their prohibition. If tomato's were prohibited, they too would be sold on a black market. Wherever there's a black market you get more violence and profits for those who support it(criminals and police). Is this what US citizens want, more pictures like the one above?Of course, some people,like "good rid-dense", think this a war on "dopers". It's a war on common sense ,for profit. It takes a real man to shoot a baby out of it's mothers arms, does it not? PROHIBITION IS THE GATEWAY TO TYRANNY!

Time To Die

We lost control when we had them...100,000 people in the street...Summer Of Love, 1969..
Then...we all ran and hid...scared by the Mighty Television/Plugged-In Drug...
Washington is under attack...details at 11:00. tonight...

There is no drug war

The war on drugs is a phony, the war is the elite versus the little people and always has been. The Elite are the big drug dealers, the only people they catch are thier competitors from the little people. Prohibition only keeps the prices high.

Half the DEA is dirty!

Half the DEA keeps dope out of the US and the other half brings it in or lets it get in, how else could so much dope get here? Don't forget North and his buddies too! Iran Countra is proof of that! Shalom. Jaye


Be glad you guys have an effective enforcement system to keep the bad guys in check.

This could work out

I kind of see globalism and the NWO blowing up in everybodies faces,the collapse of all the economies along with complete total chaos as all governments lose the illusion of control. In the end people may never trust government again in any form and then we can evolve. People will barter,carry guns and learn to read each others minds.Or they won't and they'll die. The magic 8 ball never lies.


When people have had enough and stand up things will change, BUT NOT BEFORE!


Our 'Master' class knows that eventually you will figure it out and demand a just form of existence.
The drug laws are merely a way that the powerful impose their 'Will' upon the weak. They consider the law to be the "Wheel," something to break us on.

When the nuclear age arrived they knew that if they went ahead with a full blown nuclear build up, one way or the other, it would lead to the massive extermination of the human species. They said : Ya; and went ahead and built up nuclear weapons so that they could destroy us all before we figured it all out.

The underground shelters hold a large number of our members of the murdering rich. The rest of us are to be put to the nuclear torch here on the surface.

The usual suspects are behind the plot to immolate us.

This is why ET stepped in; to give our nuclear war fighting elite a 'Time out,' and allow us the time to get rid of the nuclear weapons.

Our central bankers need to be arrested and taken into custody and placed into institutions that will provide them with humane treatment. We need to do this to end the plot to wage an all out nuclear war.

We are the Living Dead. They have launched nuclear weapons on us several times over the decades.

The only reason we are still here is because "Somebody up there loves us."


ET is not real. He's a MOVIE character...and a guy in a rubber suit.

Just thought you'd like to know.

A friend

Get your neighbors together and organize.

Home of the cowards and land of the slaves

Constitutional Equal Protection doctrine under the 14th Amendment (that freed the slaves) has legalized all drug dealing, since the LBJ, Nixon, "Ford" (King), "Reagan" (Bush), Sr Bush, "Clinton" (Blythe Rockefeller), Jr Bush White Houses have imported and dealt most of the cocaine and heroin in USA. Every driver must fight every traffic ticket in court, to stand up for their Constitutional right to travel (which is the right to own property, right to work, right to life). This also teaches proper court procedure in all trials, which is critical to winning "real" trials. It also teaches what scumbags ALL cops are. You can read any cop's personnel file as part of civil discovery or criminal Brady motions, including home address, and pull his driver license record and criminal background check. Always file criminal charges against traffic cops in traffic court, or make citizen's arrests of cops for traffic crimes. You can even get paid for winning in traffic court by filing a Bill of Costs, or get paid for losing in traffic court by joining National Motorists Association at File class actions against all traffic cops. Just say NO to tyranny.


won't solve anything just as war in Iraq didn't neither. As one stated above, if you know there is a dirty cop, get the dirt on tape, video and force his/her ass into retirement without pay. Cops hate the new technology today because they are filmed and recorded routinely by the public and its having a negative effect on their image. Keep silent, but play dirty is ALWAYS the best way to win any war, fight, challenge.

Success on the War front

We must huddle together and fite for the rite to continue and enhance the War on Drugs to ensure it is as successful as the War on Terror.

All USERs MUST be imprisioned for thier own good - no amount of deadly marijuana should be tolerated by a Christian society - they must pay now or forever be doomed to Hell!

Malkavian's picture

Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition

You should probably spend more time here:
than wank^H^H^H^H reading the Malleus Maleficarum. Reading the Constitution would also be a good thing. All that stuff about "rights" is a pretty good place to start, and maybe you can figure out why "cruel and unusual punishment" is a pretty bad idea as well.

Good luck finishing your first written essay. I'm sure your teacher will like it. See you in high school in a couple of years.

Christians scare me

After reading the first sentence, I figured it was sarcasim. This person is crazy. Let's burn the witches at the stake!!! That's nuts.

wait, he WAS being serious,

wait, he WAS being serious, i was SURE he was being sarcastic!! ah jeez, their are people walking around, with access to the internet who are THAT bonkers and they lock US up for ingesting a plant!?!?

out of control police

the only way to stop this is if the common man is not safe in his house .police should not be safe in thiers .sks are only a couple hundred bucks and will drop a commie wearing a bullet proof vest like a bad habbit .a fn49 will take out a whole row of them in one shot .a 12ga fired just below the helmet will send them to hell.lock and load america

SWAT raid map

An unlikely ally -- the Cato institute has an interactive map of US botched SWAT raids. You can have it break down the information by type of raid, innocents killed or not, etc. a map of botched SWAT raids in the U.S.

videos taken down at NBC - Chicago

The videos you cite above have been removed from Chicago's NBC5 site: Part 1 gone Part 2 gone

Swat Run Amok

What kind of  grown man wants to run around with a bunch of guys kicking in doors for a living?(They probably don't allow women on the team.) Swat should be used to fight violent  crime and terrorism.The so called war on drugs is a ridiculous waste of  time and taxpayer dollars. But Swat will never admit to that because they benefit from this nonsense.

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