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Lawsuit filed on behalf of Blythe family over raid at wrong house

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A lawsuit has been filed on behalf of a mother, daughter and grandchild who say they were terrorized by local deputies who raided the wrong house.

The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court on Wednesday on behalf of Susan Treat, Ashley Walker and Walker’s 3-year-old daughter.

The family was inside their Blythe home about noon Oct. 1, 2012, when approximately 10 armed deputies from Burke and Richmond counties burst through the doors with guns drawn, according to the lawsuit.

Treat ran and threw her body over the 3-year-old to protect her as at least two officers stood over them pointing guns at them, according to the lawsuit. Walker, who was pregnant and resting in a bedroom, was dragged into the living room.

The officers searched the house and kept insisting the women tell them where “Dante” was, the lawsuit continues. When the women responded they didn’t know who Dante was, they were placed under arrest.

For 30 to 60 minutes the women were “cuffed, berated and detained at gunpoint” before the officers realized they were at the wrong house, according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit is filed against the two officers believed to have led the raid: Daniel T. Lowe of the Burke County Sheriff’s Office and Matthew P. Perkins of the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office.

The lawsuit seeks compensatory and punitive damages for the violation of civil rights, illegal search and false imprisonment, and for physical harm, humiliation, outrage, fear and loss of reputation.

The lawsuit accuses Lowe and Perkins of callous indifference exhibited by the lack of confirmation they were at the correct address listed on a search warrant.

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OJP
6666
Points
OJP 08/29/14 - 03:45 pm
11
2
I hope for the sake of common sense that "Dante" was

wanted on something more than drug charges.

GiantsAllDay
9595
Points
GiantsAllDay 08/29/14 - 04:27 pm
12
6
The two counties may very

The two counties may very well have top pony up some $$$, but the 2 officers will have no liability as individuals. The badge gives them free reign. Oh sure, they probably received letters in their files and some sort of punishment such as no donuts for 30 days.

itsanotherday1
43297
Points
itsanotherday1 08/29/14 - 04:30 pm
17
0
I would sue too. You better

I would sue too. You better have your ducks lined up before putting me in cuffs.

raul
4893
Points
raul 08/29/14 - 04:33 pm
16
0
The incident happened almost

The incident happened almost 2 years ago. Law enforcement should have settled this out of court long ago.

flipa1
1636
Points
flipa1 08/29/14 - 04:44 pm
18
2
We love our GOOD cops, But

We love our GOOD cops, But not all cops ARE GOOD. Why do WE have to pay for bad cops mistakes??????? Even the good cops don't trust the bad cops in their ranks, they're just forced to work with them. The SECOND they have to pay their own lawsuits this WILL STOP.

Fiat_Lux
15429
Points
Fiat_Lux 08/29/14 - 04:54 pm
12
0
Bad idea, flipa

Nobody wants stupid people like these guys even running a hotdog stand, but if LEOs end up getting personal lawsuits, they will stop doing anything that might conceivably get them sued, which will be quite dangerous for us.

It's already trending that way in many professions. For a genuine reality example, kindergarten teachers and even daycare professionals are afraid to hug and comfort a teeny tiny with a skinned knee for fear that some malevolent ignoramus will report them for "inappropriate touching" and get them fired and possibly jailed.

No wonder we have created a generation of sociopaths.

corgimom
32599
Points
corgimom 08/29/14 - 06:46 pm
7
4
Not me, I hug kindergarteners

Not me, I hug kindergarteners all the time. They need that. Just did it today, as a matter of fact.

The only time I use a chaperone is when it involves naked personal parts and a bathroom. I don't do naked by myself, that's a sure way to get into trouble.

And I'm not worried.

jmo
16016
Points
jmo 08/29/14 - 06:56 pm
8
0
Are these two....

still on their respective departments? If yes, why?

specsta
6505
Points
specsta 08/29/14 - 07:20 pm
7
8
Accountability

This is exactly what takes place with a militarized police force. Armor-clad thugs with guns and badges pointing machine guns at innocent men, women and children. When you terrorize innocent people, what does that make you? Look it up in Webster's.

God forbid there had been a child's toy gun lying around, this whole family could have been murdered by a trigger-happy cop.

If SWAT or whoever is coming into someone's home, they better triple-check, quadruple-check, and make sure WITHOUT A FLIPPING DOUBT they have the right home. And they better be going after a murderer, not some low-level drug dealer to turn out with that much force.

If nonsense like this continues, cut their budget. Cut it down to patrol cars, gas, and salaries. They'll get the message. Ten officers to look for one suspect named "Dante"? Ten???? Stop wasting taxpayers money!!!!

flipa1
1636
Points
flipa1 08/29/14 - 08:02 pm
10
0
You know I respect your

You know I respect your opinion greatly and you do have a good point FIAT-L... You would be surprised how many RC employees have told me and suggested to me that I sue their bosses and the county. I just let it roll off cause I've helped cool out over 100 lawsuits against the county simply because it DOES come out of OUR pocket not theirs, and so far hasn't changed bad behaviors one bit. Recently the Supreme Court reaffirmed a citizens right to sue a LEO personally if they interfere with recording them. We're still waiting to see how that pans out.

Fiat_Lux
15429
Points
Fiat_Lux 08/29/14 - 08:09 pm
8
1
@Flipa

What a fascinating comment. I am totally intrigued.

dichotomy
33017
Points
dichotomy 08/29/14 - 10:29 pm
10
1
I hope they get $millions.

I hope they get $millions. This is the situation that scares the hell out of me. If they had "burst" through my door there would have been gunfire and I would probably have ended up dead.

If our cops are allowed to continue these no knock entries there has to be ZERO TOLERANCE for mistakes. And the only way to get these arrogant SWAT mentality cops to actually double check themselves before they kick someone's door down is to have BOTH the police departments AND THE COPS PERSONALLY held legally and financially responsible. There needs to be a few things in life that are so wrong, so bad, and have such serious consequences that even the cops are afraid to do them. ZERO TOLERANCE for "oops....sorry about kicking in your door, slamming you to the floor, pointing a gun in your face, and cuffing you in front of your terrified and crying grandkids". This is not acceptable and I hope everyone who this happens to files a lawsuit and gets BIG money from the department and the officers responsible for the "oops".

GiantsAllDay
9595
Points
GiantsAllDay 08/29/14 - 10:48 pm
8
7
Dichotomy, Zero tolerance

Dichotomy,
Zero tolerance only comes into play when dealing with kids bringing squirt guns or Tylenol to school. When it comes to actions by LEO's, zero tolerance has no meaning. Police chiefs will tolerate quite a bit when it comes to one of his own. This is the way it will always be. The cops live for the day when they can break down an innocent citizen's door unannounced and hold a gun to the occupants' heads.

gargoyle
17206
Points
gargoyle 08/30/14 - 12:07 am
8
1
Not being involved in any

Not being involved in any illicit activities I for one hearing a door busted down can't imagine a good outcome and nether can my spouse. My and their life is at stake even with big bright badges and swat gear with department name on the back. These type of arrest tactics shouldn't be a first option and only used as a last resort with the name of a judge and Sheriff to be held responsible signing off on the warrant.

Truth Matters
6855
Points
Truth Matters 08/30/14 - 06:04 am
7
2
I would have had a heart

I would have had a heart attack or crapped all over them and myself from fear. Or both!

Many examples of bad outcomes from these kinds of raids abound. A severely burned toddler from a SWAT grenade over a $50 drug deal, and Habersham County has refused to pay the toddler's medical bills. A 90+ year old grandmother was killed in a drug raid at the wrong house.

With home invasions by criminals, why on earth would law enforcement officers use the same tactics as used by criminals?

geecheeriverman
2474
Points
geecheeriverman 08/30/14 - 06:07 am
7
0
lawyers

Unfortunately, the lawyers will get most of the money from this lawsuit. It would be in both Burke and Richmond Counties best interest to settle this out of court. It would save a lot of money, and it would keep the lawyers from dragging it out, just for their own personal gain.

Truth Matters
6855
Points
Truth Matters 08/30/14 - 06:07 am
5
1
@gargoyle---12:07am Totally

@gargoyle---12:07am

Totally agree; thumbs up!

Truth Matters
6855
Points
Truth Matters 08/30/14 - 06:21 am
4
1
Hopefully people in this

Hopefully people in this profession carry Tort insurance.
That was one of the benefits of the educators professional organization. I would not have set foot in a classroom without it.

sand gnat
517
Points
sand gnat 08/30/14 - 07:16 am
7
1
Who signed

the warrant? Whatever judge that signed the warrant and the sheriffs of both departments should be the primary defendants in this. They need to be held accountable for their authorization of search warrants. Now if the cops went to a house different from the one they were authorized, that's just stupidity. Speaking of stupidity, does anyone out there know what the outcome of charges against the cop that was fired from RCSD for DUI and fighting with another officer while off duty and wrecking a RCSD investigator's car about a year and a half ago. He was later hired by the astute team at Hephzibah Police Dept. Shortly after being hired, he wrecked 2 of their patrol cars in less than a day somewhere near Athens, Ga. Nothing ever come of the charges against him?? Must have been swept under the table. Don't recall name, but he looked like Vic Mackey on the tv series, The Shield.

nocnoc
42692
Points
nocnoc 08/30/14 - 08:03 am
3
1
Who is Dante

Could this be the DANTE they were looking for?

June 19, 2012
CORNELIUS DANTE DINKINS, 20, OF THE 4100 BLOCK OF COUNTRY LANE, HEPHZIBAH, POSSESSION OF A SAWED-OFF SHOTGUN, POSSESSION OF A FIREARM BY A FIRST OFFENDER PROBATIONER AND A MISDEMEANOR COUNT OF POSSESSION OF MARIJUANA

01-2010
Cornelius Dante Dinkins , 17, of the 2600 block of Cranbrook Drive, Hephzibah, burglary; Dec. 2: sentenced under the First Offender Act to five years in prison, followed by five years' probation, fined $1,000 and ordered to pay restitution

CobaltGeorge
159198
Points
CobaltGeorge 08/30/14 - 08:20 am
3
3
So

here we go again.....

"Damn If You Do!"
"Damn If You Don"t!"

nocnoc
42692
Points
nocnoc 08/30/14 - 08:59 am
5
0
It was a stupid accident

There are Serious apologies required, there is no doubt.

Toning downing the Language during raids.

There needs to be stronger set of guidelines for issuing NO KNOCK Assault force warrants, and the process for which they are applied in the field are both needed.

We should also stop and remember Informants lie and make things up. So yes Police need to double check the info and STOP AN USE GPS & GIS data to verify which house.

One quick example of a NO KNOCK Warrant failure happened in Atlanta back in 2006 that resulted in a 92 y/o great Grand Ma being killed in her house when the police kicked the door in at the wrong house. The Police cover up lead to several officers serving time.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kathryn_Johnston_shooting

Yes some Lawsuit damages are needed,
but the lawsuit should also address fixing growing overuse of NO-KNOCK Warrants to better protect the public and LEO's.

BTW: The article FAILS to list the purpose of the RAID.

nocnoc
42692
Points
nocnoc 08/30/14 - 09:00 am
4
0
dichotomy - This article might explain

Why RCSO never showed up at your house that night.

When it takes them 30 to 60 minutes to figure out they are at the WRONG location.

myfather15
55706
Points
myfather15 08/30/14 - 09:16 am
3
3
Corgimom

It's nice that you hug children and all; but it would be even more nice if you would address the inaccuracies you stated yesterday about Bergdahl's platoon mates being anonymous complainers!!

myfather15
55706
Points
myfather15 08/30/14 - 10:15 am
1
1
I've been involved in many

I've been involved in many search warrants "raids" and for the life of me, I simply can't see how this happens!! How do you get the wrong location? On the affidavit for the search warrant, you have to give the address and VERY specific description of the residence (i.e. brick home with white shutters, chimney, driveway on right side of residence; stops at garage, small wooden water pump house in the front yard, etc). You are also SUPPOSE to have done surveillance and spoke with informants who have been to the residence. You should know color, make and model of the vehicles driven by the person(s) who live at the residence; and vehicles who frequent the residence often.

The research done BEFORE obtaining a search warrant is very in depth!! I just can't see how anyone makes this mistake!!

itsanotherday1
43297
Points
itsanotherday1 08/30/14 - 11:04 am
6
0
And that is the rub...

"With home invasions by criminals, why on earth would law enforcement officers use the same tactics as used by criminals?"

With more and more people arming themselves against home invasions; no knock warrants are an open invitation to tragedy if the wrong door gets kicked in. Cause if I hear my door coming down, I'm not waiting to see who's coming through it before I light them up.

myfather15
55706
Points
myfather15 08/30/14 - 11:49 am
3
1
itsanotherday

No-knock warrants are supposed to be executed on homes dealing drugs; hiding felons, etc!!

The majority of the time, these type people are already heavily armed; which is why police come with SWAT type teams!! I can see your point; as I know I'm not committing any crimes in my home! If my door get's knocked in, the first thing I'm thinking is NOT that it's the police!!

But, criminals also used such tactics to their advantage!! Many criminals do home invasions wearing shirts that have "Police" on them!!

Just another example of confusion!! Police have got to make more effort to get it right!! Lives depend on this!!

Angela H
3292
Points
Angela H 08/30/14 - 03:11 pm
2
3
"The cops live for the day

"The cops live for the day when they can break down an innocent citizen's door unannounced and hold a gun to the occupants' heads."

What an absurd piece of libel, GAD.

Angela H
3292
Points
Angela H 08/30/14 - 03:12 pm
2
3
Myfather...you do know that

Myfather...you do know that Corgi will never admit saying something that isn't true, don't you?

myfather15
55706
Points
myfather15 08/31/14 - 12:55 am
1
1
Yes, I do know that; but that

Yes, I do know that; but that won't prevent me from continuing to call her out on it. At least until she flags me again and I get told to leave it alone!!

On the Bergdahl matter, and the "untruths" she told, I will continue to remind of of it, just like you do about Purdue Chicken! I also like the fact that you continue to ask her about it; her response is ridiculous.

But on the Bergdahl matter, I believe it's much more important!! She is spreading "untruths" whether intentionally or out of ignorance of the issue!! Either way, it's just WRONG!!

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