Monday, June 11, 2012

Doggycide in Minneapolis, Minnesota – police clusterfuck edition

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Dog chalk outline

Sweet Christ. That’s about all I can say after reading this stupefying report about what happened when three Minneapolis, Minnesota officers showed up at a woman’s home in pursuit of a runaway sex offender:

As [Leah] Anderson's husband met the officers in the front yard, the family's 8-month-old pit bull appeared. Anderson's husband said he would collect the dog and called for it, but the officers called out "Pit bull!" and began shooting, striking the dog in the head, legs and body and fatally injuring it, the suit said. A bullet or bullet fragment struck one of the officers in the leg, and another dog also was shot and wounded.

The officers radioed that one of them had been shot, and soon approximately 30 officers arrived at the house, according to the suit. Anderson and her family and guests were handcuffed or placed on the ground before they were led away, the suit said.

The real kicker is what happened next, as it seems the officers thought – or rather, they subsequently claimed they thought – that they had been shot at from inside the house. Never mind the apparent coincidence that the injured cop was hit by a ricochet right at the moment when a number of officers went all trigger-happy in response to the dog’s mere appearance. So, naturally, with the homeowners being carted off and with additional backup, they vented their frustrations in a typically mature and responsible manner:

[E]nraged officers then ransacked the house, breaking windows and doors, damaging furniture, ripping a large-screen TV from the wall and dumping a fish tank onto the floor, killing the children's pet fish and hermit crabs.

Well, they sure showed that house. And to his unexpected credit, even the police sergeant took Anderson’s side:

Anderson said she discovered the damage to her home when she returned several hours later. She said she then met with Minneapolis police Sgt. Jerry Wallerich to complain. According to the lawsuit, he told her that the police action was done out of revenge due to the police officers' mistaken assumption that someone in the house had fired at them and advised her to sue the department to recover her losses.

And that wasn’t even the end of it:

The following afternoon, on March 31, several officers who did not have a search warrant returned to Anderson's home, the suit says. They threatened the home's occupants, used a racial epithet and told one person that it was lucky it wasn't dark outside or they would put that individual in the hospital, according to the suit.

If there’s ever been a more representative case study illustrating everything that’s wrong with police departments these days, I’ve yet to see it. Kudos to Sgt. Wallerich for doing his best to rectify such a stellar clusterfuck of sheer bullying incompetence.

(via @radleybalko)

Doggycide Bingo card
[full size (514×625)]

Doggycide Bingo Index

Confirmed hits:

  • Dead pitbull
  • Injured second dog
  • Cops shot first
  • Polar opposite to apology
  • Dogs shot in cold blood
  • Cops threaten family, retaliate by trashing home
  • Gratuitous discharge
  • Pitbull shot 10 times
  • Cops entered (and destroyed) property illegally
  • Total: 9/25
    Bonus points for generalized police assholery. No bingo.