Video has recently been released of a SWAT raid on the home of a Evansville, Indiana woman.
Louise Milan, 68, was at home with her 18 year old adopted daughter when Evansville SWAT crashed through her front door on June 21, 2012.
Police were searching for an individual they said had been going online and directing threats towards Evansville officers. As it turns out the Milan household had an open wireless Internet connection, and the threatening posts were not made from inside Louise’s address. Both Ms. Milan and her daughter’s computers were seized in the raid. No evidence was found against them.
Derrick Murray, a local gang leader, was later arrested by the FBI for the posts. Murray lived with his mother just down the street from Milan. He later admitted to federal prosecutors that he posted the threats via his smartphone. Unknown to Milan, Murray was connecting to her wireless router to gain access to the internet. The router connection was not protected by password.
Ms. Milan is now suing the city of Evansville. Police Chief Billy Bolin and all 11 members of the SWAT team who preformed the raid are also listed as defendants.
The lawsuit states,
“The officers smashed Milan’s WINDOW and storm door and threw in two flash-bang grenades that created property damage in addition to the destroyed window and storm door. The officers used flash-bang grenades despite the fact that [there] were no threatening suspects visible. Milan and her daughter were ordered on to the floor at gunpoint, handcuffed and paraded in front of their neighbors into police vehicles. Both were detained and questioned by the officers.”
It is worth noting that the SWAT team was serving a search warrant, not an arrest warrant.
One of the SWAT officers was wearing a body camera at the time of the raid, which caught the entire incident on film. The city said it decided to release the video to illustrate how professional and respectful the officers were toward the Milans.
Scroll down to watch the video and decide for yourself.
The city of Evansville is seeking a ‘favorable judgement’ in the case being brought against officers who they believe acted within the law.
According to the Evansville Currier & Press,
City attorneys Keith Vonderahe and Robert Burkart argued in the motion that police are protected by the legal principle of qualified immunity. In it, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that “government officials performing discretionary functions generally are shielded from liability for civil damages” as long as their conduct does not “clearly” violate established “statutory or constitutional rights.”
Do you think these officers’ actions violated constitutional rights?