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Maryland Legislation Seeks to Address Out-of-Control SWAT Raids

Following the botched drug raid death of his two dogs, Berwyn Heights Mayor Cheye Calvo has gone from drug war victim to hero of justice. His dreadful experience – and dignified response – has inspired two Maryland legislators to introduce a bill that will improve data collection on aggressive police raids:

All the bill does is require each local police department to submit a monthly report of any SWAT activities, with details of time, place, evidence seized, arrests, and any injuries. "This bill is an important first step that doesn’t restrict [SWAT] use," Calvo said. "It merely brings transparency." Transparency should be the least the public demands with regard to the use of potentially deadly force. [Examiner]

Don’t be at all surprised when law enforcement interests in Maryland bitterly oppose any effort to document their activities. They are going to completely freak out about this. You know why? Because police in Maryland conduct unnecessarily violent drug raids all the time, endangering innocent people routinely and without consequence. Naturally, they would prefer that such conduct not be scrutinized.
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SWAT Scrutiny

Why not require all SWAT Team members wear a video/audio recorder in the front of the uniform? These devices can be purchased for under $300.00 a piece and are very reliable. This would allow Commanders to evaluate performance AND keep a record of what happens if there are any questions. IF the SWAT teams are not doing anything wrong, this will not be a problem. Video is being used by the police departments on cruiser dashboard cams, street cams and redlight cams all over the country, so why not on SWAT?

They tell us it's about drugs

when it is really about control. When laws make more criminals than can possibly be contained all enforcement becomes selective enforcement. Statistics show who they select. SWAT Teams just streamline the process by dispensing with the pretense of law to move directly into domestic terrorism upon selected groups and individuals, the actual role of law enforcement.

All the King's Horses and All the Kings Men

OK, let me get this straight....someone (Sheriff ?) decides that it is entirely proper due to the anticipated risk to send 16 armed to the hilt swat team members to enter the house of a person who was guilty of "misdemeanor" possession. Hmmm.
So, does anybody think that a rationale argument against such behavior can be comprehended by these idiots? The people that need to be in on this discussion is the Bar Association for the State of Maryland. They can sanction judges for improper behavior. Unless the judicial branch of Maryland has decided to allow the administrative branch to dictate to them how they are to do their jobs. What does the Bar Association say? Make them say something. Without the judges signing off on such nonsense the officers couldn't do what they are doing. The cause isn't the incapable (16 needed for 2 adults & 2 teenagers) Swat members but the negligent judges.

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