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Police raid a veteran's home twice after he mentions owning a gun


According to the Institute of Justice's newsletter, a recent federal court decision was handed down stating that a raid and search of a veteran's home violated the Fourth Amendment.

Washington Post has the summary:

Veteran suffering from PTSD calls suicide hotline, admits to gun ownership, but repeatedly explains he doesn’t have a weapon at the ready. His interlocutor calls D.C. police anyway, who send in SWAT. He surrenders. Police search his home, see nothing concerning in plain view. Hours later, they re-enter, rip the place apart — and (allegedly) leave the stove on and the front door unlocked for two weeks while he’s in jail. D.C. Circuit: The second search violated the Fourth Amendment.

While the second search was ruled as a violation, it's still unclear why the first arrival of SWAT was necessary. The veteran clearly made it plain that the weapon was not posing a threat to his own life. While the interlocutor may have just been looking out for the veteran's safety, it was still unnecessary for SWAT to arrive.

Furthermore, it is unclear why after the first round, police thought it necessary to rip apart the veterans apartment.

Veterans call suicide hotlines to receive help. However, in this situation, the system he reached out to for aid may have not only damaged his property, but his faith in that system to see him through tough times. It would be a shame to think that veterans would be afraid to dial the hotline for help, for fear that it would result in police action against them.

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