Thursday, July 11, 2013

Serving Warrants

Serving arrest warrants can be one of the most dangerous jobs for police officers, constables, and bounty hunters.  Warrants can be issued for anything from searches of homes, cars or people.  There must be a lot of information before a judge issues a warrant and the wording must be specific as to what exactly the executing agent is looking for.  When that specific thing is found the warrant is concluded and considered served.  Most warrants are served by a minimum of two officers for their protection as well as the person being arrested or property owners if it is a search warrant.

While working with a narcotics task force of officers from several agencies we served warrants on meth labs, marijuana growers, and dealers  in various locations covering 3 counties in Central Texas.  Being one of only two female officers on this task force we always got to go in after the guys announced our presence and knocked the door in with a ramming bar or they got to kick the door in so we could run inside and stop the destruction of any drugs inside.  We also caught the bad guys off guard and at a disadvantage (we hoped) so the only ones with guns would be us.
After numerous search warrants served successfully I finally convinced the leader of the team to let me be the one to kick the door in on the next raid.  I was so pumped for this and I had something to prove.  As per the plan we were going to be entering the door at the back of the house.  It was early in the morning and as the sun was rising I heard the word, 'GO'!  So as I ran towards the door I raised my right foot and smashed it through the door.  The door swung open with me still hanging in it.  All the rest of my team ran passed me into the house yelling, 'Search warrant, task force.'  As they started the search I am still struggling to get out of the door.  I decided it would be easier to go through the door rather than trying to get out the way I came in.  That was a smart move.  I finally got my turn and boy did I show 'em.
In the debriefing it was a comedy show at my expense.  They all swore they didn't know it was a hollow core door but the more I thought about it the boss said yes to me too quick upon my request.
The next time we planned a search warrant we decided to hit a house that I was real familiar with and I didn't volunteer to kick the door in on this trip.  The informant that had been in the residence just hours before we were to raid it didn't have a chance to tell us that the door was blocked on the inside by a large refrigerator.  The occupants of the home had been evicted the day before and the home owner had moved the refrigerator to clean.  As was normal for radio silence prior to the announcement of the raid I also was unable to tell the team about the new development.  They hit the door with a battering ram, once, twice, and they were about to hit it again when I opened a front window and told them it would be easier if they came in the back door.  The team was completely dumbfounded.  It was my turn to have the laugh. The boss figured this was my way to get back at them for the hollow core door.  It wasn't of course but I wished I had thought of it!
Laughing at each other really was our salvation in difficult situations.

As I began a swing shift at 3pm I was given a warrant for an individual for arrest on the charge of rape.  I contacted another officer and showed him the warrant and asked him to back me up. 
As we approached the residence of the suspect we noticed someone was home.  A male came to the door after we knocked.  I asked him if he was the name on the warrant and he told me he was.  I then requested a driver's license or ID card to verify his claim.  He presented his license which did in fact identify him as the person we were looking for.  I then explained to him that we had an arrest warrant for him for the charge and I showed him the warrant.  He wanted to discuss the charges right there and he was told this was not the time or the place to do that.  He was advised to cooperate and after his bond was set he could obtain an attorney and work it all out. This individual became very indignant and reluctant to follow my directions as I placed him under arrest.  I walked him out side to my patrol car and I opened the back door for him to get in and sit.  At this point the backup officer left.  The suspect sat in the backseat with his legs and feet outside the car.  He refused to put his feet inside so the door could be closed.  I stood there with him refusing to cooperate for about 15 minutes.  Finally, I bent over and picked up his feet to place them in the car.  It was at this point that he lifted his right foot and kicked me very hard on my left arm above the elbow.  My reaction was to immediately pop him in the nose with the back of my right hand.  He yelled and immediately put his feet in the car and I slammed the door shut!
I took him to the city jail and he was booked.  Afterwards he was given medical care for his bloodied nose.  I went to my Sergeant and told him what had happened.  I wrote another report about the assault on me by this individual and we took several photos.  The photos showed a very clear imprint of the shoe this guy was wearing in a bruise.
About 9 months later an agent with the FBI came to the police department and spoke with our legal adviser about a civil rights violation charge that had been filed on me.  The FBI agent was brought to the patrol division and I was called in to meet with him.  When I walked in to the office this agent was surprised to see that Officer T was a female.  This was not stated in his report from the complaining party.  So he read me my rights and proceeded to tell me about the complaint.  When he told me the complainant's name I knew then it was the guy I had arrested on the Rape warrant.  I brought the photographs to the agent of the bruise I received from him on my arm.  I told him that when I hit him it was simply a reactive movement after he kicked me.  This agent was totally appalled at these pictures and he told me that his broken nose was justified as far as he was concerned.  The agent closed the complaint as UNFOUNDED.
Thank You, Jesus.

to be continued......

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