Violent No-Knock Police Raids on Homes Must Stop ~ VIDEO

Tombstone, AZ – -(Ammoland.com)- The police killing of Amir Locke while executing a warrant in Minneapolis, has once again drawn attention to the dangerous and often deadly use of violent surprise tactics in the service of search and arrest warrants. While the common refrain is a call-to-end use of “no-knock” warrants, those are not the only warrants that are a problem. Some warrants authorize police to breach the door directly after knocking or announcing. Too often a warrant that authorizes “dynamic entry” creates more problems than it solves – for both police and the public.

Few details are available in the case of Amir Locke beyond the badge cam videos, but the basics are clear. Using a key from management, police quietly entered the apartment of Locke’s cousin to serve a warrant in a homicide case. The cousin was absent, but Locke, who was visiting, was asleep on the couch.

As officers entered, they began yelling their typical litany of contradictory commands:

  • “Police – Warrant!”
  • “Get on the Ground!”
  • “Show your hands!”
  • “Don’t move!”

…and so on, and kicked the couch where Locke was sleeping, the 22-year old emerged from beneath a blanket with a pistol in his right hand. At this point, an officer fired several shots, killing him.

The shooting was probably justifiable from the officer’s viewpoint, as he perceived the threat of a gun, but Locke was probably startled and confused, and also justified in grabbing a gun at the violent invasion.

Had Locke been in a less helpless position and somehow been able to fire at masked men coming into the apartment and rousting him from his sleep, there is ample precedent for a finding of self-defense. A dynamic entry puts the rights of the officers and the right of occupants of a home in direct conflict resulting in a situation where both sides can claim a justifiable use of deadly force.

In other words, a raid can create a free-fire zone. Also, for the record, it is not at all uncommon for criminal home invaders and drug rip-off crews to impersonate police as they are assaulting a home.

As mentioned, Locke was not a resident of the apartment, nor was he named in the warrant. Conflicting statements have come out regarding his possession of the pistol, but the consensus is that it was legally owned by Locke and that he might have had a concealed carry permit. Regardless of other details, unless Locke was a “prohibited person” under federal or state law – which it appears he was not – then his possession of a handgun in a home would be completely legal.

The police request for a “no-knock” warrant has not been published, and the reasoning for the alleged demand for one has not been made clear. A 17-year old cousin, brother to the tenant of the apartment where Locke was killed, was later arrested in connection with a January 10 homicide. That cousin lived in a different apartment in the same building but was known to frequent his older brother’s apartment, so police had warrants for both apartments.

The teen cousin is on probation for a previous shooting, raising questions about the efficacy of the Minneapolis justice system?

Protests calling for a ban on the use of “no-knock” warrants, erupted in Minneapolis as news of the killing spread. Of course, Minneapolis was the epicenter of the 2020 protests and riots after the death of George Floyd. During those protests, which went international, another name was frequently mentioned, that of Breonna Taylor, who, like Amir Locke, was killed by police serving a warrant regarding someone else.

Locke and Taylor are just the most prominent, recent examples among many around the country, several of which I have written about in the past. At about the same time that Breonna Taylor was killed, a 21-year old man named Duncan Lemp was also killed by police executing a “no-knock” warrant in Maryland. Lemp was the target of the warrant, based on suspicion that he might possess an illegal rifle. Not that there was any indication that he had, or intended to use the rifle in a crime, just that he was thought to be in possession of one that has been banned in Maryland.

Unlike the Amir Locke case, there is no body-cam footage of the incident, apparently because the police union demanded exemption from body-cam requirements during SWAT raids. Officials said this policy would be revised. They have also never released the name or record of the officer who actually pulled the trigger. A subsequent investigation (by the police) cleared the police of any wrongdoing.

The main difference between the killing of Breonna Taylor and Duncan Lemp, is that Lemp was a Caucasian from an upper-middle-class family, and an outspoken constitutionalist, while Taylor was Black and working class. Police killing a “rich White kid” did not feed the current narrative, so coverage of Lemp’s case never gained traction outside of “right-wing” circles. Had Duncan Lemp been a Black man, you can bet that his killing would have been headline news, and protests would have ensued. But that’s a discussion for a different time.

The key takeaway right now from these tragedies is not about race. It’s about critically flawed police procedures, and the lack of accountability, both for police who carry out the flawed raids, and the judges who authorize them.

It needs to be said that my default position is to support the police. Members of my family and several close friends have served and currently serve in law enforcement ranging from patrol officer to county sheriff to federal agent. No small part of my opposition to reckless warrant service stems from a concern for officer safety. As pointed out above, under Castle Doctrine rules, an officer serving a warrant in a dynamic entry can face an armed homeowner who can justify use of deadly force. Until a homeowner can verify that the people attacking him are law enforcement officers with a duly sworn warrant, he is under no obligation to allow them entry into his home.

Unfortunately, the number of “dynamic entries” is rising. According to Professor Peter Kraska, of Eastern Kentucky University, the number of “no-knock” and “quick-knock,” SWAT-style raids for serving warrants nationwide, soared from around 3,000 per year in 1981, to over 60,000 per year today.

While I believe there are some very limited circumstances where a “no-knock” or “announce and enter,” or similar “dynamic entry” type of warrant can be justified, those circumstances should be limited to situations where speed is essential because innocent lives are at risk. The risk of destruction of evidence is a specious argument. Commercial quantities of drugs or other contraband won’t flush, and smaller quantities aren’t worth the trouble or the risk.

Tightening rules around dynamic entry warrants is not the best solution. History shows that police can be very creative at working around such restrictions, while still obeying the letter – if not the spirit – of the law. I believe that a better solution is to inject a healthy helping of accountability into the mix. Those requesting, authorizing, and executing warrants in a high-risk manner need to take on a share of the civil risk.

The police officer who swears out the warrant, the senior officer who signs off on it, the judge who issues the warrant, and the officers who execute it, all need to lose some or all of their qualified immunity if the raid goes sideways. Everyone in the legal chain trail of a warrant authorizing high-risk tactics should bear personal, legal liability for anything that goes wrong. If an innocent or a police officer is killed or injured, if the wrong house is hit, the wrong door kicked, or a dog killed unnecessarily, there must be a personal price to pay by everyone involved. If each individual involved has his own skin in the game it might focus minds more on the possible dangers and risks involved in kicking in doors in the middle of the night.

This isn’t a Black thing, a White thing, or a Blue thing. It’s a right and wrong thing. It’s also a Constitution thing.

The Fourth Amendment states:

“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.”

While an argument can be made that these warrants are issued “upon probable cause, supported by Oath,” it’s a safe bet that the framers wouldn’t consider battering rams and flash-bang grenades as “reasonable.” The vast majority of the time, there’s a better way, and police, judges, and prosecutors need to be motivated to find that better way, and stop these tragedies. The time has come for less adrenaline-charged tactics. What’s so urgent? Set a perimeter. Order pizza.


About Jeff Knox:

Jeff Knox is a second-generation political activist and director of The Firearms Coalition. His father Neal Knox led many of the early gun rights battles for your right to keep and bear arms. Read Neal Knox – The Gun Rights War.

The Firearms Coalition is a loose-knit coalition of individual Second Amendment activists, clubs and civil rights organizations. Founded by Neal Knox in 1984, the organization provides support to grassroots activists in the form of education, analysis of current issues, and with a historical perspective of the gun rights movement. The Firearms Coalition has offices in Buckeye, Arizona and Manassas, VA. Visit: www.FirearmsCoalition.org.

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Chris Mallory

Warrants must be served as “Knock and wait”. Otherwise you have armed government thugs knocking , yelling “Police” and kicking in the door 5 seconds later. No practical difference than a no knock warrant. We also must make a government employee’s privilege of self defense subservient  to a citizen’s right to self defense.

john

Boys and girls the police do not decide whos door on their own, A judge makes the decision to issue a warrant of any kind. The information that judge collects from that law enforcement agency involved before he makes the choice to issue the warrant is always the problem. The Judge and the district attorney need to be held responsible without them it is a no go.

Dr. Strangelove

What are the police supposed to do when they raid a drug house full of armed gangbangers? Knock politely and wait for them to answer the door? If it’s not a race thing, why isn’t anyone protesting Duncan Lemp? If the police have enough probable cause for a warrant, no one’s constitutional rights are violated. These raids have their place, but must be executed with care and plenty of evidence.

Chris Mallory

Yes, knock and wait. Turn off the power and water. Have officers guarding all 4 sides of the house. Have a patrol car with flashing lights out front. Knock and wait. Wait until the door is opened, then the cop must present the warrant before stepping one foot into the building.

The rights of citizens are more important than “law enforcement”. These raids have no place in the United States.

gooder12

As normal I only skimmed the article, and also the comments, and yes I should read it, but I got the idea that this author was on the same page as I am. My skimming of the comments shows There Is Still Hope as most of us are on the same page. I mean even the great JSNMGC seems to have a wider view on this subject! I have always supported our LE and our Governments, but only to a point, and I have seen a lot to protest over in my 69 years on this side of the dirt,… Read more »

Stoney

Right on point! And in accord with the 4th Amendment of the Constitution! I hope those in a position to do something are listening and act.

nrringlee

Thank you. Wisdom is a rare thing today. You are absolutely correct in that this is not an ethnic or class thing, this is a Constitutional thing. When we stick to our core principles we can’t go wrong. When we cut corners out of a sense of ’emergency’ or necessity we fall off the path. These raids put both innocent citizens and law enforcement at risk. The risk needs to be justified by urgent public safety issues and not just another hide on the wall in our war on drugs or war on everything. These raids have become far too… Read more »

Levelhead

One of the most sensible thing said in this article is “What’s so urgent? Set a perimeter. Order pizza.” If the supposed offender is contained leave him alone. When he gets hungry enough he’ll come out. If he is innocent he’ll be out as soon as he gets a phone call. If guilty what’s a day or two set against a loss of life, on either side. I’m not soft on crime and I believe in serious penalties for offenses, no matter how minor. But this crashing through people’s doors in the middle of the night and then wondering why… Read more »

Wild Bill

They could have the water and electricity turned off to help shorten the wait. Take a can of ether and spray it under the door.

Grim

Ether is explosive! Not a good idea.

Finnky

After police find themselves innocent of wrong doing, the only redress available is a civil suit against the city. Unfortunately this punishes taxpayers rather that the involved parties. Even so, were I on such jury, city would have a tough time justifying themselves without video. Only reason for cops to not have body cams on everyone during a raid would be to hide evidence of wrongdoing. Multiple highly publicized cases, while directly harming taxpayers, puts political pressure on city ‘leaders’ to “do something.” If they do not, voters (most of whom pay taxes) can remove politicians who failed to do… Read more »

Arny

” If they do not, voters (most of whom pay taxes) can remove politicians who failed to do anything substantial enough.
We used to think so. lol

Finnky

Let’s hope we don’t have to turn to fourth box – though it appears ever more imminent.

gregs

like jeff said in his article, there has to be some personal accountability with leo’s when they conduct these type of raids. the taxpayers shouldn’t have to pay for the misconduct, usually not found by other leo’s. when bad things happen. leo’s should have to obtain and pay for their own professional liability insurance just like i had to do when working as a medical professional.

Tank

Was Amir trying to use his Natural right of Self Defense – Castle Doctrine ? We’ll never know. Officer Safety can be a Mission Creep tool justified & used from the deck of cards under color & authority of the law. What if Amir had a child or plural children that he was protecting as the child’s parent & that child was also killed ? What if Amor’s father or mother were there with Amir ? Any Stealth – Dynamic Entry has Speed, Shock (Violence of Action), Surprise as their gestalt dogma DNA. “Getting the jump” – Ambushing – Assaulting… Read more »

Last edited 2 months ago by Tank
Finnky

Have you watched the video? It is quite clear Amir was justified in his use of force.

TStheDeplorable

I have looked at the issue of no-knock warrants, dynamic entry warrants, and night service warrants as both a police officer and later as a lawyer, and my conclusion is that there are enough times that they are necessary that the answer to the problems that happen is not to get rid of them altogether, but instead to statutorily increase the requirements of what must be shown in the warrant application, and to reform the process of getting warrants. As it stands, the police are free to choose any judge they wish to apply for a warrant. Every detective knows… Read more »

Finnky

While I lean much further toward no no-knocks, I greatly appreciate your considered middle-ground suggestions. Would like to suggest adding body-cam requirement on all raids. Videos violating rights of victims of such raids would not need to be released, but refusing to record police actions in such volatile situations smacks of dishonesty and corruption. Primary purpose of such video is to protect officers by proving appropriateness of their actions. Ties in well with reining in (un)qualified immunity.

Finnky

By “Videos violating right of the victims” I was referring to videos exposing victim’s private life, such that release violates their right. Not referring to videos exposing rights violations.

OlTrailDog

Clearly Amir was just about to flush his cousin down the toilet. What’s the prob?

TexDad

Officer safety: no, it gets them shot too, on occasion.

Preserving evidence: dubious and even if valid, not worth lives.

The late night surprise forced entries have to stop.

Superb well-written article.

swmft

houses built to resist hurricanes and tornadoes do a good job of stopping this as well ,watched cops with a battering ram bounce off front door and land on their asses , took about two hours to make entry guy was long gone out a tunnel they did catch up with him in brazil no extradition saw the interview he did think it was dateline ,but could have been 60 minutes whistle blower that they wanted to shut up or so he claimed,dont know the whole story with the crazy robberies happening there dont think brazil would be a good… Read more »

Last edited 2 months ago by swmft
swmft

the number of criminal things done under color of law

swmft

down votes say you believe you should be above the law…..hummm just as I say there are more bad cops than good and most of the good are not good because they wont at least try to stop the bad

Tank

Exactly which is why the old saying goes that Cops are the biggest gang. Doing the right thing(s) doesn’t always happen in reality. Same thing & axiom of truth applies the military especially if it’s occupying a Vassal state as a Force.

Glypto Dropem

First off, my wife and I are not criminals, nor does anyone else live with us. Therefore, a S.W.A.T. team kicking in my door at Zero-Dark-Thirty would be there for two reasons only. 1). They have the wrong address, or 2). We are the victims of a “swatting incident.” In any event, the kicking in of my door, throwing flash-bangs, shooting my dogs, etc WILL BE MET WITH MAG DUMPS AND FACE SHOTS. There is no expectation of L.E. showing up uninvited at my home, and no reason for me to believe such actions are not the work of criminals.… Read more »

Last edited 2 months ago by Glypto Dropem
Wild Bill

God forbid that any of that should happen to you, but if it did I force legions of tort attorneys lined out side of your smashed, broken door, and riches for generations to come.

swmft

the big but to that is like the wrongly convicted, winning in court is easy they almost never collect anything. sovereign immunity

john

First and foremost you are still alive. God give us one life don’t waste it.

Wild Bill

No, use of the Federal Tort Claims Act is quite common, and I think that every state has their own version of it.

john

Correct again
When the Swat team shows up at your home it is always with a plan of action. You are their plan of action there intent is clear overwhelming force every option they have will be used.

Finnky

“Love” spell checker… you foresee legions of lawyers – right?

Wild Bill

Wow, I did not even notice that. Thanks for the assist.

john

Why would you want to die your family will suffer and your only accomplishment will be to empower those that want to dismantle our second amendment. “Not all fights require the sword”
There is a old saying you live by the sword you will die by the sword. Knowing how and when to wield the swords power make you smart & dangerous. Mad Dumps sounds like to many video games and bad rambo movies.

Finnky

You are correct. Better to survive, collecting names including detective who requested warrant and judge who signed off on it. Revenge is better served cold.
Closing to fight at a tactical disadvantage is unwise if you have options. Better to catch each of the guilty parties individually and unaware and to live on quietly.

OlTrailDog

Appears to me to be a good reason to always have things squared away with you Maker.

Deplorable Bill

Trees are known by their fruit. Attack my house, possessions, family etc. and I will have no choice except to treat you as the terrorist vermin you are. Anyone can buy police uniforms, radios, guns etc. I can think of more ideal ways and reasons for you to meet the LORD but, if you insist……… GOD HIMSELF gave mankind the right and obligation to keep and bear arms and that is written into constitutional law as the 2A in this country. I am surely more fearing and respectful of the LORD than I am of anyone else on this earth,… Read more »

john

I wish you well, I hope your awake and ready for action not sleeping or in the shower or working on the family car. Playing with the dog or making love with the wife. If you live in perpetual fear than you are not living protecting your home sounds like a full time job. Even with the best training there is a lot that will go wrong.

Wild Bill

Or after surveillance and a decision about where you are most vulnerable, surround you as you get out of your car in the church parking lot or grocery store parking lot, or whichever parking lot.

Deplorable Bill

A much wiser decision than breaking into my home in the middle of the night. Still, there may be the question of who they actually are, a gun in the hand is very much a threat no matter if it’s the bad guys or the good guys. Anyone can buy police uniforms/ badges/ radios/guns etc. Trees are known by their fruit. An attack is an attack and would have to be dealt with. What on earth would the cops be attacking me for? Makes no sense and there would be little time. Act like a terrorist,cartel operator, murderer and you… Read more »

Deplorable Bill

John, I am Christian, I fear nothing, no one, but the LORD. I am also terminal and have been that way for some years now. What are they going to do to me? Send me to Heaven? I will not be scared of Heaven. I say no knock warrants are dangerous and should not be used. What is someone to think when you wake to find armed men in your house pointing guns at you? I reserve the right to defend my property, family, friends, neighbors, the innocent guy on the street and myself. I am a vet, I am… Read more »

john

When is the last time you went fishing it is a great way to relax I hope you feel better prayers raised.

Deplorable Bill

Thank you for your prayers. It’s been years since I went fishing, I live out in the desert. Would have to stop meds to drive. Waiting on dove season, got more than a few out here.

Arm up and carry on

Dubi Loo

I fully support ending No-knock and Announce and Immediately Enter warrants. I fully support police be held liable for their unlawful actions. Just because a cop does something does not necessarily make that something lawful. I fully support officers who honor their oath.

swmft

the police should have to abide by the law,no exceptions, if you cant do your job without cheats ,you are the wrong person for the job!

OlTrailDog

Sadly, this has become a way of life during our current times. A multi-tier justice system and a weaponized justice system. Especially at the two extremes of the financial and political spectrum. Examples, Hillary and Bill Clinton, Comey the Comie, Brennan, Clapper, Holder, Lerner, the Biden Crime Family, McCabe, Orr, the FBI, DOJ, CIA involved with the Russia Hoax, and innumerable more. It serves to breed increasing disdain, disregard, and hatred for those whose jobs should be held in high regard.

Tank

Yes it should be this. And of note we are not seeing any enforcement of that standard at any level. Especially with the amount of False Flags & Crisis Actors coupled with legalized Gas lighting & Agitprop & weaponized media.

Chris Mallory

The problem is that the laws are written to protect and encourage these violations of our rights. Or they fall back on “policy”. The tree of justice is rotten root to stem as it currently exists.

JSNMGC

Rights protected by the 4th Amendment have been infringed on as much as rights protected by the 2nd Amendment. The same people lobby for laws that infringe on both sets of rights. The same people enforce the laws that infringe on both sets of rights. The same people make sure they are exempt from many of the laws that infringe on both sets of rights. That group of people is losing the support of the majority. They should be concerned, but they are not. [Note: there are individual exceptions within the group, but the group as a whole does these… Read more »

Last edited 2 months ago by JSNMGC
Arizona

No more immunity. And as for exceptions, any exception written into laws for police nullifies that law. Laws apply to all or none at all!

Russn8r

It ain’t Trudeau on horseback in a jack-booted goon suit trampling disabled old women. It’s police, “Just” Following Orders, enjoying immunity, improvising for fun while “good” cops do nothing (Paycheck Uber Alles).

Russn8r

Oooh, burn, Wild Bill’s copsuckers downvoting. So sad!

Russn8r

What’s up, TEX?

OlTrailDog

I think of it as Harry, Curly, and Moe pay Ammoland a visit and actually look forward to see what antics will be on display 😉

swmft

I gave you a down, what good cops? this is goon squad plain and simple, they disarmed their subjects

Russn8r

Gave me a down? ?

john

Agreed

swmft

one innocent is 1 too many, they did not sign on to take risk cops that murdered them did, who should be on the slab!

JSNMGC

Unfortunately, the exceptions will never end.

The police have been too successful at convincing a large percentage of Americans that they are the only ones “professional” enough to:

  • Have semi automatic rifles;
  • Have standard capacity magazines:
  • Use certain types of ammunition;
  • Carry at all in many places and in many other places only allowed to carry if pre-approved by an enforcer;
  • Have certain types of handguns;
  • Etc.
  • Etc.
swmft

police in most of country have select fire

JSNMGC

I should have spelled that out as well.

In many areas they don’t want “civilians” to have semi auto and will ruin their lives if they find them with semi autos.

Finnky

Look at NFA records – number of registered machine guns by year. Given that number has continued to rise since FOPA banned new machine guns for regular people – only explanation is that police are taking advantage of exception for police departments. In rather rough numbers there were ~200k – which can be assumed to be (mostly) in private hands. Now there are over 600k. Thus cops have ~400k or roughly one for every two cops. I’d say cops in this country have select fire – while it is effectively banned for law-abiding citizens. Of course if you listen to… Read more »

Tank

Should have always been an eye for an eye to begin with. Hammurabi’s Law # 96.

Force of any government system when it’s not kept in check & allowed to be corrupt & run amok is to protect itself & survive. It will not show it’s failures/faults/wrongdoings/flaws if given the opportunity to run roughshod on it’s citizens/people.

We are seeing this in the US, Australia, NZ, UK, Canada et alia & currently manifest in Ukraine with the puppet Zionist in power there.

Fascism/Communism is like that eh…

Last edited 2 months ago by Tank
swmft

what rights ,haven’t you heard these are just suggestions, Mine is to arm up and carry on (large enough caliber to put them back outside)

JSNMGC

It would be great if the hundreds of thousands of quiet good apples (that some tell us exist) would organize and make statements about these rights.

swmft

we cant even find 5 on a pro gun site ,do you believe there are even a thousand nationally?

Finnky

Aren’t there only ~800k LEO in the entire country? How would anyone organize a quarter of all cops to speak out against their peers? Assuming 25% or more are good apples.

JSNMGC

How about 100?

What do you think, Finnky, is it too much to ask that 100 of the good apples organize and speak out against the relentless anti 2nd Amendment lobbying of their brothers in blue?

musicman44mag

There was an article posted before about this incident. Though in the past I have complained about posting something that had comments that were months old, I find it warranted that this issue and video be posted again because no knock is still in existence and needs to end. I find that something about Alec Baldwin needs to be posted again because that situation has not changed either. If the public does not pressure our master’s and keep issues in the forefront, nothing will happen because they know if it goes silent, we will forget and that is what they… Read more »

swmft

so fbi goes to safe deposit store and steals clients stuff , guess the blm people got the good stuff at nordstrums

Considerthis

“Police Union demanded exemption from body cam requirement during SWAT raids ” Kinda jumped out at me. Seems like ” We will not be held accountable and we will do what we want , and there’s nothing you can do about it “

Henry Bowman

Police departments have become the standing army that our nation’s founders warned us about. And the America we were born in is no longer…

Wild Bill

Daryl Gates of the LAPD invented the first Special Weapons and Tactics Unit, as I recall. He used it against the home grown terror group that called itself the Symbonise Liberation Army. Not sure of the spelling.
People nation wide loved it and every major PD in the country took their cue from that.

Wild Bill

That is the group! Does anyone know how to spell Symbionese (since there is no Simbia)?

john

Symbionese Liberation Army (

Wild Bill

That is a first! 🙂

Russn8r

Oh sure. Your sock puppet posse spends 99% of your time here defending corrupt cops, coyly pointing at ATFBI as a diversion.

john

When any one group gains to much power there is always going to be corruption. The police are up against it these past 2 decades Obama being the catalyst for racial divide democrats using that as a springboard.Political ideals the media propaganda along with instant video from the public which always never tells the whole truth. There are good garbage men along with the bad Good Doctors and bad ones. The difference is that the police are publicly funded to act within the law. Judges and districts attorneys should remember it is their job to make sure that the police… Read more »