Andrew Leonard, 33, is understandably ticked. Police in Baltimore conducted a mistaken “no knock” raid on the wrong house: busting through his front door, handcuffing him, and interrogating him and his wife about his relationship with a drug dealer who he has never met. They had the wrong address. Now, after refusing repeatedly demanded to pay for his front door, the city has ticketed him for leaving a door on his front lawn.
CATO has a study showing hundreds of these abusive raids and the increased in “no knock” searches which judges have been robotically approving any time detectives mention drugs. The paper is Radley Balko’s Overkill: The Rise of Paramilitary Police Raids in America. For prior such stories, click here.
Leonard has been entering and exiting his home as he demanded that the city at least replace his front door. The city refused to pay for the rent because it insisted that the raid was not mistaken: his address was the one on the search warrant. It was simply the wrong address. While he also called the bulk trash collection office for the door, they failed to come. However, city inspectors did come and gave him a $50 fine for leaving the door on the front yard.
After publicity, the Mayor is now saying that she will guarantee reimbursement. However, she has not indicated that any effort will be made to punish those responsible for the mistaken raid or the people who insisted that search was not mistaken simply because the wrong address was put on a warrant.
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