Skip to comments.Gwinnett County Police Break Down Door To Wrong House
Posted on 12/11/2008 3:52:51 AM PST by from occupied ga
Gwinnett County police said they accidentally broke down the door to the wrong house before going to the correct house and arresting a man on drug charges.
Gwinnett County police investigators intended to execute a no-knock search warrant at a home on Valley Spring Drive in Lawrenceville Wednesday morning. Police said the lead investigator mistakenly pointed out a home to the officers and once officers entered the home they realized they were in the wrong house.
VIDEO: Gwinnett County Police Break Down Door To Wrong House
The homeowner of the incorrectly targeted house told Channel 2 that having guns pointed at him was something he would never forget.
"(They) put my life, daughters life, my ladys life in danger," said homeowner John Lewis.
Lewis said Gwinnett County investigators burst through his front door and ordered him and his girlfriend to the floor at gunpoint.
Its an experience to have one gun draw on you. Its something else to have 15, 16 of them, said Lewis.
Lewis said his 3-month-old baby saw the whole thing. She was the calmest one, said Lewis.
Police said once they realized their mistake the search was ceased and the homeowners were released. Police said the front door to the home was damaged during the process.
Fifteen minutes after bursting into Lewis' home, officers served a search warrant at the correct home on Valley Spring Drive. Police said the warrant was served after a three-month drug investigation.
Police arrested Efrain Pedruza, 31, and he was taken to the Gwinnett County Detention Center. Police said they found $24,000 in cash in the home.
Officials said the investigation is continuing. Police are paying for the repairs to Lewis' door.
You would think after a three month investigation that the cops would get the right house.
If they broke down my door and it was an honest mistake and they were looking for a dangerous criminal I could forgive that.
But a drug-war-gone-wild mistake would make my blood boil :-(
Same thing happened a couple of years ago in our town. Police got the wrong house, busted in, and beat up an elderly man in front of his terrified wife. Of course, they are still in gainful employ.
I’m not tarring ALL police with the same brush....don’t get me wrong. They deserve respect and admiration for what they do daily, putting their lives on the line for very little pay. Just some in ‘our parts’ seem to lack ‘communication skills’ and need further training.
Well, that's awfully nice of them.
My first reaction would have been to reach for my gun if someone busted into my home. Anybody here who wouldn’t have?
I think reaching for a gun would be anyone’s first reaction.
This could have ended in tragedy. The police really screwed up trying to make this bust.
I suspect most would have, and then outnumbered 15 to one would have been killed. And of course the criminals would get away with it.
Can you honestly say you have never made a mistake on the job?
These drug raids happen every day all across the world. Occasionally, very occasionally, they are going to get the wrong house.
A single incident is not indicative of an epidemic of error.
Homeowner’s lucky they didn’t start out by killing all the family pets: that’s the SWAT-nazis’ usual M.O.
What if it were an "honest mistake" and they killed you or your wife or your child? Could you forgive that?
You’d be a fool if you did reach for a single gun while outnumbered 15 to 1. The best reaction is to stay seated and stay calm, while asking quietly, “Can we help you, Officer?”
Then when the guns are put away you can march into Police Headquarters and throw a temper tantrum.
Everyone one of these thugs should be fired. Animals like this have no business receiving a taxpayer funded paycheck to “police” the neighborhood. And no, I don’t care that it was a mistake. Mistakes like this are way too common and it’s high time that severe examples are made of the perpetrators.
And mine's not loaded with those little rounds that a Level II vest will stop, either...
It’s far from a “single incident”. I suspect as long as it happening to somebody else, it’s ok with you.
With this phone baloney "argument" I'm trying to decide if you're just naive or dishonest. My mistakes do not have the potential to kill anyone. My mistakes don't terrorize anyone. My mistakes don't break down the doors of my neighbors. How would you feel if you were the recipient of their "mistake?" (provided of course that the didn't kill you in an "honest mistake"_
That didn't happen, did it? The police don't start randomly shooting on these raids.
“Police said they found $24,000 in cash in the home.”
Which goes to the Police Dept. discretionary fund?
Doesn't matter - no police were hurt, so everything is OK.
I'm guessing they didn't have any.
Yep. Pretty good haulfor a little bit of work. First case the place to make sure that there is something worh stealing, and then go and steal it via home invasion robbery.
Haha! I've experienced real things in life. It would take a lot more than this to make me react. True, the surprise of 15 uninvited armed men in my house would cause my pulse to race, but that is where my reaction would stop. I have enough common sense to know that 15 tense armed officers may not like me screaming at them.
Besides, I prefer to take my grievance up with their commanding officer.
Man you are a naieve little sheep aren’t you. If I made a mistake of this magnitude at my job I would not only be fired but blackballed inthe industry as well and possible criminal negligence might even be pending. Did you notice there was no mention of drugs found at the “correct” house? But, they did find $24,000 of evil cash.
>>A single incident is not indicative of an epidemic of error.
No, it’s not. And either you haven’t been paying attention, or you are being disingenuous.
Botched Paramilitary Police Raids: An Epidemic of “Isolated Incidents”
What a load of manure. Or maybe you're going to try and tell people here that you never heard of things like Kathryn Johnson. Go back to DU or daily KOS.
i like when the guy said that his 3-month old child saw the whole thing! THAT was funny.
That's the irritating part. I thought police were given IQ tests, yet, if my town is anything to go by, some officers have the brain capacity of a squirrel. It makes no sense given the folks of higher intelligence (and brawn) who are rejected from the force.
I'm going to go out on a limb here and say someone given preferential employment (ie affirmative action employee) may be responsible for this oopsie.
Not naive, just a dishonest jack boot licker.
A day without cops trampling the rights of citizens is like a day without thorazine for the jackboot lickers.
So sixteen botched raids across the country in 2008. How many successful raids were there?
I am not being disingenuous. I am a mathematician.
What percent of ALL raids are botched? What other factors contribute to these mistakes (ie, political interference, affirmative action incompetence, bad mapping software, etc.)?
I am not being disingenuous. I am a mathematician..........................Tell me Mr. odds maker, what is the chances of someone being seriously hurt or killed between legal home invasion and arrest of individual when he leaves the house. Other than protection from immediate life threatening actions, why in the hell are no knocks needed, you sound like you are in favor of no knock raids.
Knock off the personal attacks
“Can you honestly say you have never made a mistake on the job?”
Yes. I can honestly say that I have never accidently held an innocent man at gunpoint after breaking down the front door to his home.
Not even once.
“Besides, I prefer to take my grievance up with their commanding officer”
That’ll earn them a good talkin’ to.
I am in favour of no-knock raids— not as a routine thing, but when the element of surprise is necessary to round up a large group at once and to collect the evidence necessary to obtain a conviction.
I believe that when you screw up the address for a no-knock warrant and subject innocent citizens to such a invasion, that the lead investigator should be fired and prosecuted. I guarantee you that if the roles were reversed and someone broke into the lead investigators house with guns drawn, someone would be going to jail.
What other factors contribute to these mistakes ................................The fact that the LEO are not held pesonaly responsible for their actions. That is the biggest contibuting factor or they would think twice and get it right if they were held accountable. (Had to make sure I didn’t make a personal attack)
Seriously, if this happened to me I WOULD make a big deal out of it, just so it doesn’t happen again. But under no circumstances would I react aggressively (or defensively) while the men are still in my house, as other FReepers have suggested they would do. That is just plain foolish.
You’re incredibly naive.
And I just looked at it on google maps. It is a cul de sac. Could not be more than ten homes.
There were fifteen bloody people there! It wasn't the mistake of a single individual. There are address numbers on houses, mailboxes, curbs, etc. Did any one of this dozen-plus group think to check addresses against the warrant?
>>”Youd be a fool if you did reach for a single gun while outnumbered 15 to 1. The best reaction is to stay seated and stay calm, while asking quietly, Can we help you, Officer?.....
Are you over-medicated? “Stay seated and stay calm” my a$$!!!
What has the world come to when a man wouldn’t take immediate action to defend his family at all cost from a home invasion? Sorry, but I guess we don’t have enough Lithium added to our water supply where I live to just sit there and allow such an attack.
Perhaps he should have offered them a cup of herbal tea and some organic bran muffins. Get real. Some things are worth dying for and the safety of one’s family meets that requirement.
This happened in a town I used to live in and the homeowner was shot and killed. Like any other homeowner, he grabbed his pistol and, prepared to defend his family, himself, and his home, was gunned down.
We have home invasions by gangs here. So I should do nothing and roll over if a gang invades my home?
Your protest will be paid lip service. Preservation of the unit’s “integrity” is too important to allow any kind of disruption due to a citizen’s complaint based on a “mistake” unless you’re the mayor and they shoot the dog.
The no-knock warrants, except fro KNOWN armed and dangerous felons, must cease.
They won’t until the Second American Revolution.
Some jobs are more critical than others and if you're involved in a job like that you double check everything .
Now I don't know how many successful No Nock raids there were but I'd bet the mortgage that there were less than there are commercial flight landings .An honest mistake would be a pilot forgetting to put the wheels down before landing .So just for giggles I checked the NTSB accident data for the last twenty years and found ONE commercial accident where the pilots forgot to lower their gear. This happened for the simple reason that they use two persons , go by a check list and verify everything. I don't know for a fact but I understand the same thing happens in the Navy aboard submarines.
This was a three month investigation , the raid comprised of fifteen officers .Why couldn't one of them verify the most important thing that they were going to the right house.
You are wrong there is an epidemic of this problem. It is so bad that Los Angeles PD has a carpenter on the payroll to fix the wrong doors they kick down. Not to long ago in the midwest cops broke down the wrong door and some very old lady shot several of them.