Skip to comments.Suit alleging MPD executed search warrant at wrong home (Maui, HI)
Posted on 01/15/2012 7:19:28 PM PST by bamahead
A Kihei couple is suing the Maui Police Department in federal court after officers allegedly raided their home while executing a search warrant on the wrong address last year.
April and Norman Freeland allege that police forced them outside and searched their home for nearly half an hour, even after they knew they were at the wrong location. Attorney Sam MacRoberts of the Law Office of Philip Lowenthal said the couple still has never seen a warrant for the search.
The Freelands' lawsuit naming Maui County, Maui Police Chief Gary Yabuta and Maui Police officer Jerald Perkett was filed Oct. 14 in U.S. District Court in Honolulu. The suit alleges police violated the Freelands' constitutional rights and asks for $250,000 in damages and $1 million in punitive damages. Trial has been set for January 2013.
According to the Freelands' complaint, they were at home hosting a dinner for three guests on April 15 when they heard a loud noise from their front lanai at around 9 p.m.
When the Freelands approached the door to their lanai they found armed men who did not identify themselves but were later identified as Maui Police officers, according to the complaint.
"When Norman Freeland touched the door, the men rushed into the Freelands' home without permission," the complaint alleges, adding that the officers did not "knock and announce" their presence as required by state law.
The officers "screamed and yelled" as they entered the home, grabbed Norman Freeland by the wrist and forced him and his wife outside, where they were held by a man carrying a "combat-type weapon," according to the complaint.
The men told the Freelands that they had a warrant but did not show it to them, according to the complaint.
(Excerpt) Read more at mauinews.com ...
“Sorry, citizen” ping.
Heck, what are they worried about if they have nothing to hide like a Ron Paul sticker or other contriband such as a banned copy of the Constitution.
Apparently the TSA has decided to start operating outside of airports....
Lookin’ for a little Maui wowie.
Always double-check the address on the warrant against the address on the house before busting down the door and shooting the dog.
Well hey, ya never know what sort of good stuff you might uncover, you know how deceitful these stupid citizens are........it was for their own good.
"Obviously, they were confused over what was going on at their house, but no search was ever done," she said.
Do I detect legal weasel words?
“searched their home for nearly half an hour, even after they knew they were at the wrong location.”
My bet is “looking” for “evidence” they could use as leverage against this suit...
These good folks should be happy they were not shot dead by these jack booted thugs in uniforms.
If they would have shown the paper to the people so they could see the names and the address, this wouldn’t have happened. It is amazing that several law enforcement people have no clue if they are going into the correct house or not.
I also like how they went through the house looking for people but it wasn’t a search.
I wonder what would have happened if they had run into a vicious Peekapoo? BLAM!, Mitzy. You daid for interfering with official police bidness.
I imagine they broke a few things just to show them who’s boss and just in case they didn’t find anything or anyone, they can at least have had some fun.
I'm going to disagree with myself. It still might have happened. In fact the odds are pretty good. These guys do NOT like to be proven wrong.
Missing from this discussion, in this age of the internet, is the fact that the police can get a “Google” image of the street, cars on it, house addresses, and full maps of the area before going in with a search warrant.
The question to be asked is why wasn’t this done, since they raided the wrong house? Did any supervisor check the address on the warrant (while outside the house), with the address on the gate/house? Apparently not. This is negligent behavior.
How do you spell “law suit”?
“Obviously, they were confused over what was going on at their house, but no search was ever done...]
So, they entered the home, removed the occupants, conduct a sweep of every room to ensure no threatening individuals are present -— by their own admission, but then state they did not conduct a search?
Being an American citizen is becoming very cumbersome as of late.
Maybe they were looking for that danged birth certificate?
I’ve always been against all of the lawsuits we see out there. Everybody suing everybody. Now, it’s crap like this that is making me rethink about how I feel about them. A moron who is not smart enough to find the correct address has no business serving a search warrant.
What is more, if the intended site of the raid is nearby, the people there have a heads up to vamoose or make damaging evidence disappear when a convocation of cops suddenly appears down the street.
Some drug addled informant likely swore up and down this was the spot, while naming an address elsewhere on the street. There will probably be an official statement that “this informant will no longer be used” but beyond that, a stone wall.
Even if the raid was an honest mistake and the evidence was in plain sight?
I think so. They had no probable cause at all to enter that house. They could probably seize evidence, but not use it.
“The men told the Freelands that they had a warrant but did not show it to them, according to the complaint.”
Apparently those police officers consider this little amendment to be outdated:
“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”
Click the link to be added to the "Whoops. Sorry, citizen. We thought you were someone else" PING list.
yes, they had no right to be there at all. All “evidence” would be tied to the fact that they had no warrant for that address.
As long as innocent taxpayers are being sued and held responsible for the abuse of police, instead of those who actually carry it out, it will not end. The police unions are the parties that need sued just as they threatened to sue the OWS protestors. If it is good for the gander it should be good for the geese. I hate civil lawsuits because the attorneys always win, but the lack of any aggressive and serious criminal prosecution against lawless law enforcement leaves no other choice.
Proper protocol would have been for the Police, upon realizing they were at the wrong house, to have planted some combination of narcotics, stolen firearms and child pornography, and then claim to have seen them in plain view from the front door while escorting Girls Scouts on their cookie delivery route.