(NaturalNews) As Natural News has reported often, we respect the dedication and hard work of police officers, all of whom put their lives on the line for the communities they serve and protect.
But we've also noticed an increasingly disturbing trend - the militarization of police departments all around the country. The so-called "war on terror" is largely responsible for this alarming development, funneling tens of millions of taxpayer dollars to communities of all sizes to purchase military-style gear so that they can, someday, at some point, maybe respond to a terrorist incident.
Well, with all of this gear just sitting around, some departments, unfortunately, have begun to incorporate it into police functions, such as serving routing warrants, which, once upon a time, did not call for such heavy-handed tactics.
Worse, the "gear up first, ask questions later" mentality has led to some poor decisions.
From police work to video series
From Courthouse News Service:
Texas lawmen broke into a woman's house without a warrant to arrest her on bogus marijuana charges, and filmed it for a constable's YouTube reality show, the 61-year-old woman claims in court.
Perla Carr sued Montgomery County, Texas, its District Attorney Brett Ligon, its Precinct 4 Constable Kenneth "Rowdy" Hayden, Precinct 4 Chief Barry Welch and three other deputy constables, in Federal Court.
The woman says that "loud noises of someone breaking into her home" awoke her at about 10:15 p.m. on Sept. 22, 2011.
"The intruders called Perla out of her bedroom and when she came out of the bedroom there was at least one gun with laser sights pointed at her chest by law enforcement officers with Precinct 4, Montgomery County, Texas," the complaint states.
The five officers proceeded to search every room, then arrested Carr's son for felony marijuana possession, she says in the suit.
"Perla was put into handcuffs and made to sit in a lawn chair outside the residence," according to the complaint. "The handcuffs were very tight and caused extreme pain.
"After searching Perla's residence and finding alleged marijuana plants deputy Eric McHugh under the direction and knowledge of at least Constable Hayden, Chief Welch and Supervisor Berglund wrote up a materially false and misleading affidavit to support a search warrant," the complaint says.
What's more, she maintains the affidavit falsely said the constables saw marijuana in the home through a window and smelled it before breaking in. Also, Carr says, constables left out the fact that they searched the residence without a warrant.
Nonetheless, the phony affidavit worked, Carr says, because a judge signed a search warrant that arrived two hours after the break-in.
Constables charged Carr with felony pot possession, but it was later dismissed for a lack of evidence, she said.
"Sometime after Perla's case was dismissed in her favor, Perla discovered a video on YouTube of the defendants breaking into her home with a crowbar through the front door. ... The video was for a reality television show called 'Texas Takedown' and is currently available to view on the Internet," the complaint states. "All defendants were aware of the filming of the incident involving Perla and 'Texas Takedown.'
"Also, the recently discovered video shows Constable Hayden talking on the phone to DA Ligon prior to the crowbar break-in, who advises Constable Hayden to 'force entry," said the complaint, which includes a link to the video.
A review of the site on Vimeo.com says: "Texas TakeDown is a new police show that focuses on Constable Kenneth 'Rowdy' Hayden and his 'Men in Black' as they fight crime in the badlands of East Montgomery County, Texas - a region flooded with crystal meth, drug dealers, and violence."
Carr is seeking punitive damages for civil rights violations and conspiracy, Courthouse News Service reported.
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