Thursday, May 26, 2011

Yes, jackbooted government thugs

I bring this up about once a quarter - it is time again.

Let me repeat - it is a blight on our national honor that we have "Serve & Protect" police who like to dress up like what they think special forces are supposed to dress like and wage war on the American people.

If they want to be a soldier - then they should join the National Guard or regular Army.

Police have zero reason to dress like some South American paramilitary death squad. Visuals matter.

Dressing like you just maxed out your credit card on adds from the back of Soldier of Fortune magazine doesn't make you tough or effective.

It makes you look like an perfect example of the abuse of police power that we largely fought the American Revolution over.
SWAT team initially claimed that Guereña fired at them while they were serving a warrant — as he slept. They claimed that his bullets hit the bulletproof shield that the entry team hid behind, and that the barrage of bullets they fired back was in self-defense.

Only, Guereña never fired his weapon. Awoken by his wife with screams that men with guns were invading his home and threatening his family, Jose Guereña armed himself with a AR-15 rifle and crouched in the hallway. The SWAT team unloaded upon Guereña on sight. He apparently recognized the home invaders as police. He took 60 rounds, but never — as the Pima County Sheriff’s Department was forced to admit — took off his weapon’s safety as he was being killed.
Pima County sound familiar? Sure it does.
It was, you’ll recall, a claim Dupnik made in the wake of Jared Loughner’s bloodly rampage at a “Congress in your Corner” event at a Safeway supermarket in Tucson, where six were killed and 14 others were injured — including, gravely, Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. Dupnik was attempting to blame the conservative Tea Party movement for the shooting when he made the comment. And even after it was revealed that Loughner’s few known political views had been described as “quite liberal,” and were in fact muddled at best, he refused to retract his slur.
All of this from a mindless "war on drugs" executed my mindless "public servants."
A Marine veteran of Iraq that had the discipline not to fire — a discipline that a trigger-happy SWAT team which has now killed three men in less than a year cannot itself exercise?

Not only has the Pima Sheriff’s Department tried to justify firing 71 shots at one man in a small hallway, hitting him (thankfully, just him) 60 times in a home where his wife and child were present. They’ve attempted to justify their refusal to let a team of paramedics treat Guereña, who was still miraculously alive after being sprayed mercilessly with bullets. It takes a competent SWAT team just a handful of minutes to “clear” a residential home during a raid. Dupnik’s SWAT team refused to declare the scene “clear” for an agonizing one hour and 14 minutes, and not until Jose Guereña had already died.
This is personal too. In a house full of women in an area of the country with high crime - you break in my home without telling me who you are and run up the stairs - I'm getting a gun too.
Not content to blame the victim for his own death, they attempted to insinuate he was a drug dealer, even though they were forced to admit under direct questioning that no drugs were found in his home, and that a clumsy cop falling down may have triggered the bloodbath.

Vanessa Guereña claims that neither she nor her husband heard the officers announce themselves as police. As anyone who has ever seen an episode of any popular police reality show knows, no entry team waits 15 seconds after announcing themselves to batter down a door and rush the inhabitants — as Pima County Lt. Michael O’Connor claims his SWAT team did. Identical scenes of immediate entry upon announcement (or after breaching), without giving those inside a chance to react, is a standard tactic captured again and again.
Bob Owens has it just about right.
Jose Guereña’s death was entirely preventable. Over-armed, over-amped law enforcement is causing far more harm to the public than other tactics and techniques possibly could.

The over-militarization of law enforcement agencies and over-use of SWAT teams is an idea that needs to be revisited in a sane society. Too many good people have been traumatized, and too many killed, under the flimsiest of circumstances.

After surviving two tours of duty in Iraq, only to lose his life in an encounter with Clarence Dupnik’s keystone cops, Jose Guereña was buried with full military honors.
Be a policeman - not a member of a death squad.

Hat tip Mike.


DM05 said...

I generally respect cops. Have a fed in the family that kicks down doors sometimes; bravely & professionally on known bad guys, with 4/4 Intel & snitches. This is just tragic, that an American Combat Veteran is slain - murdered - in his own home. Maybe there's more to the story, but the sealed warrants smell like cover-up, big time. And I'm with you... As a law abiding citizen in my house? That's my castle and it shall not be trifled with.

The Usual Suspect said...

Definitely not the America I grew up in.  It seems that law enforcement has taken a turn for the worse and is all about revenue enhancement and playing with paramilitary toys.  I remember beat cops back in the early 60's.  I remember cops eating lunch with us in the school cafeteria.  I remember when law abiding citizens weren't afraid of the cops. And I can remember when there wasn't the us vs. them attitude.  They barricade themselves in a car and isolate themselves from those who are not law enforcement.  RIP Jose Guereña, USMC.

Mike F. said...

Except we now have had a state supreme court rule that citizens have no right what so ever to protect themselves from an unlawful breakin by cops.

AW1 Tim said...

 It gets even worse. the cops, and Dupnik all claimed that they arrived WITH SIRENS ON, and announced themselves. However, none of the neighbors claim to have heard anything before the gunfire erupted.

 Within minutes of this attack, though, several of the neighbors homes were searched by the police, without warrants, and without the owners being told the reason(s) for the searches.

  Both Blacfive & This Ain't Hell have been on top of this story for several days. It's a disturbing event, made even worse since not only have the warrants and reports been sealed, but the sheriff has instructed all his staff to NOT answer anything from ANYONE about this event.

  Fortunately, the MSM seems finally to have been forced to address this situation, but there are still more questions that need to be answered.

  For example, since the Sheriff knew where he worked, and when, why not just arrest him at either his workplace or while enroute?  They could search his house under a warrant then, without the need for such a response and the force they brought.

  I'm also fed up with all of this. Cops should be wearing blue police uniforms, not cammo and military gear.

AW1 Tim said...

  Hopefully the SCOTUS will overturn that ruling, and that right soon. I simply cannot fathom how a court could rule like that. Of course, I NEVER expected the Kelo ruling to come down as IT did, either.

James said...

Yes i've heard about this for awhile it stinks to high heaven. I love the fact that even though this man was a "latino" which means to many in the left protected class.

Yet because of shariff ****tard and his band of happy bum monkies and there "brave" stance on immigration in Arizona. The left was silent and indeed was jovial and chirppy about it.

andrewdb said...

Tim -

I grew up across the street from the Undersheriff of our county (that's the #2 in the department).  He used to say that when you dress officers like jackbooted thugs (think motorcycle patrol officers) they tend to act like that.  Dress them in blazers and ties and they act differently. 

Sal points out how SWAT teams dress.

Malachy Marine said...

Its a shame that Sgt <span>Guereña died this way. While I do think police tactical teams are a generally good "idea," in fact I am friends with several tactical officers, whether its their primary billet or an auxiliary one, but I believe that much of the training they get is flawed. This is not to say ALL tactical teams are bad, many are very professional (also many are heavily comprised of  veterans), however, I find many police practices to be overkill. </span>

I can envision a situation where Sgt <span>Guereña's squad kicks down a door and a protective Iraqi father was standing in the hallway with his weapon pointed at the intruders. I can also see them killing the Iraqi (its happened more then a few times), these things can and do occur to innocent people. the major difference is the entry teams reaction to force and their Escalation of Force procedures. </span>

<span>Even in the above situation I could not see Marines firing more than 10 rounds. Not too mention clearing the house in over an hour!! WTF! You can clear a house of threats in a relatively short period of time, allow medical teams in and conduct your Sensitive Site Exploitation (SSE) simultaneously. Inexcusable.</span>

If what you say is true about them searching other homes, AW1, then Pima County Sheriff's Office has some serious issues. As to the sirens, I can't envision a tactical team rolling up on what they think is a hard hit with sirens blaring, or them loudly announcing their presence. They rely on speed, surprise, and overwhelming force of numbers to arrest.

But there again causes a contradiction... a tactical team is NOT a squad of Marines clearing a building. They execute two different tactical tasks: Apprehend versus Destroy/Neutralize. Their ROE should be different, which means their EOF should also be different. I can't even tell you what one of my NCOs would do to his Marines, if they shot 60 rounds at a single target... from less than 25m away. Those Marines would be sore until the day they EAS'd.

Anonymous said...

Murder. Plain and simple. Time the FBI does a serious investigation with Federal charges pending on the leadership and the trigger-pullers.

UltimaRatioRegis said...


Great and pertinent post.  And this is irrespective of Republican or Democratic administrations.  In fact, this all began under GHWB, who signed into law the single greatest threat to civil liberties, RICO.  RICO tosses any and all due process aside, and was the first step on the slippery slope toward police forces who seemed to think they told us our rights, and they made the laws, and they enforced them any way they chose. 

Keep banging the gong.  This is a continuation of a dangerous, dangerous precedent.

Grumpy Old Ham said...

<span>Over-armed, over-amped law enforcement is causing far more harm to the public than other tactics and techniques possibly could.</span>

Thanks to the (ineffective) "War on Drugs", mostly.

Grumpy Old Ham said...

I am probabaly in the minority on the Front Porch, but I have damned little respect for most law enforcement anymore.  Between this incident, traffic enforcement that's focused on revenue collection, to shooting dogs based on questionable evidence, it's obvious that law enforcement is losing sight of their primary mission.

Grumpy Old Ham said...

<span>I am probabaly in the minority on the Front Porch, but I have damned little respect for most law enforcement anymore.  Between this incident, traffic enforcement that's focused on revenue collection, to shooting dogs based on questionable evidence, it's obvious that law enforcement is losing or has already lost sight of their primary mission.</span>

Sean said...

What was the thought process behind a frontal assault of the person's house? I would love to see the breakdown of the sequence of event as you see in after action reports the highlight the various decision points and where mistakes were made.

Stu said...

Fruit of the same tree though thankfully not deadly.

butch said...

Sal left out an even more egregious bit of info: the cops kept the paramedics out for over an hour while Guerena bled out.  Dead men tell no tales,

The problem is these thugs are exercising power with no accountability, an always toxic combination.

DeltaBravo said...

Actually this goes further back than that.  I'm remembering the jackbooted thugs invading a home and sticking a gun in the face of little Elian Gonzales in that midnight raid.  Shooting a mother in front of her children at Ruby Ridge.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Those incidents were both after the GHW Bush administration, and occurred under Bill Clinton and Janet Reno.

CDR Salamander said...

1.  No I did not.  Read my post.

Bad butch - no soup for you.  :-P

Squidly said...

Manslaughter, or 2nd degree murder?

DeltaBravo said...

Oops... sorry... I read that as GWB.  You're right.

CDR K said...

Remember the introduction of tasers?  They were extensively justified as being necessary for (and ONLY for) protecting officers up against the "superhuman" strength of people on drugs.  Now, tasers are routinely used on people for the most minor of infractions or passive resistancce. 

The uniforms, equipment, and "training" are expensive and mask serious problems with the overall competency and professionalism of police departments.   Judges should be asking hard questions about the need for night time raids as opposed to some surviellance and a quiet arrest in a parking lot.  "Makes for good teevee" is not sufficient justification.

MR T's Haircut said...


Get active!  Appeal to the FOP.. your Senator, your congressman.. DO IT....

this is WRONG..

MR T's Haircut said...

For clarity... they actions of this "SWAT" team is wrong... Criminals...

pk said...

hey grump:

remember this is the bunch that is politically correct.

could we say that affirmative action breeds incompetence.


LT Rusty said...

You want some more fun?  Google 'Matt Hale San Luis Obispo' sometime.  Fortunately, nobody died in that incident.

Jesus.  Don't police have some version of the line about supporting and defending the Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic in their oaths?  If not, why?

butch said...

Sorry, Sal.

Bad commenter, bad!

butch said...

Why does every podunk sheriff's department need a SWAT team?

Buncha spec ops wannabes.

Anonymous said...

Now let's get it right....shooting a mother while HOLDING her child.

Squidly said...

Someone got ahold of helmet cam video (from outside the house):

Squidly said...

Pima / Tucson arguably probably does, given the high volume of narcotics trafficing up through the Coronado National Forest and adjacent areas.  

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Murder, plain and simple.  Gutless murder at that.  Clarence Dupnik should be behind bars.  And when the feds arrest him, they should come at 0230, with eight seconds of siren, a mumbled warning, and, if he makes the slightest move, a hail of bullets. 

Aubrey said...

On the other hand, I live in a small city in northern Colorado and not only do we have a SWAT team, we have a freaking APC converted into a battering ram.  


F@#&ing ridiculous.

Anonymous said...

First, because it's fashionable.  Every other department has one.

Second, because Federal tax dollars pay for it.

Anonymous said...

There's one way to stop this.

Strict gun control.

For the police.

I'm convinced that no police agency should have access to full-auto weapons...and quite possibly no access to self-loading firearms of any description.  A six-shot revolver, a double-barreled shotgun, and a bolt-action rifle are all the firepower required for legitimate law enforcement.  Machine guns are for the military and the militia.

DM05 said...

That video is simply horrendous. Broad daylight, way too many tactical uniforms. I'm with URR on this - that is flat out murder perpetrated by amped locals. There needs to be lots of them thar su-peeen-ee's and prosecution for the tactical and UP, include douchenik.

pk said...

quite a few years ago lapd had an armoured vehicle with   turret mounted ~2" gun on top that they welded some i beams across and used to punch through walls etc.

i asked one of their captains why they had it and he replied "cause the mayor wouldn't let us have a tank".


Anonymous said...

<span>I can't sign in for some reason.</span>
<span> </span>
<span>I believe this is not anything new.  You just know about it because of social media.  </span>
<span> </span>
<span>When I was young and growing up in Charlestown during forced busing, our civil rights were violated daily.  Students and buses were gone by 1500, but the police presence remained until well into the night.  Boston's Tactical Police Force dressed a la SWAT and rode up and down Bunker Hill Street in vans.  They drove slowly, beating their billy clubs on the inside walls to intimidate us.  They chased elderly people - I especially recall my grandfather's brothers, WWII vets (Joe was at the Battle of the Bulge), upstanding citizens, being forced into their homes.  A police dog chased my aunt Mary, (president of the Charlestown Garden Club, memer of the historical Society & over 60 years old) half a block before it's keeper reined it in.  They harassed people with a fictitious curfew.</span>
<span> </span>
<span>But the press didn't repoprt any of that.  I have not purchased a copy of the Boston Globe since.  Even "Common Ground" a fairly unbiased book about busing in Boston, downplayed what we went through.</span>
<span> </span>
<span>Could that happen in Charlestown today?  Certainly not.  It would be on Facebook, in blogs, on Twitter.  And I for one am very grateful.  Thanks to social media banging this drum, those responsible for Sgt Guereña's murder will be made to answer in some form.</span>
<span> </span>
<span>Oh...and screw the FBI (and Eric Holder), I want NCIS on this.</span>
<span> </span>

ewok40k said...

ho-hum... who will watch the  watchers?
on the other hand in a case of another
do you really want the cops to be outgunned?
or AQ Mumbai style attack?
perhaps the best solution is tackling the quality of the police officers, aka
problem exists between the shoes and the trigger...

Retired Now said...

remember the War on Poverty ?

another WASH DC run  SNAFU

UltimaRatioRegis said...


Those are EXCELLENT comments.  W. Arthur Garrity (a Worcester boy and brother of my school superintendent in central MA, and a Johnson appointee) perpetrated this crap with legislation from the bench.  That is the first step.  We need to stop that, as well, otherwise the kind of activity you describe, and the tragedy in Pima County, will continue to have pseudo-legal legitimacy.

But really an excellent description of this on a wide scale.  (Though your Aunt Mary was probably a gun runner for Sinn Fein.)

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Those are EXCELLENT comments.  W. Arthur Garrity (a Worcester boy and brother of my school superintendent in central MA, and a Johnson appointee) perpetrated this crap with legislation from the bench.  That is the first step.  We need to stop that, as well, otherwise the kind of activity you describe, as well as the police actions that led to the tragedy in Pima County, will continue to have pseudo-legal legitimacy.  
But really an excellent description of this on a wide scale.  (Though your Aunt Mary was probably a gun runner for Sinn Fein.)</span>

Grandpa Bluewater. said...

Your love will go unrequited.  The cops screwed it up and know it, and are in max collusion to protect the guilty mode.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Actually, the War on Poverty has gone superbly.  Redistribution of the wealth from the earners to the takers.  And the expansion of an entire segment of society virtually dependent on the government dole, voting en bloc for the candidate that promises them the most of my money.

How does the "urban" vote go?  Almost 90% toward the party that implemented the War on Poverty.  Now THAT is success.

Bubba Bob said...

Now I remember why I love this blog!

Bubba Bob said...

<span> </span>On Friday, one of the nation’s most important artists died.  Gil Scott Heron is dead. 

<span> </span>The musician and author, Scott-Heron died on the afternoon of May 27, 2011 at St. Luke's Hospital, New York City, after becoming sick upon returning from a European trip.

<span> </span>“As Wall Street goes, so goes the nation. And here's a look at the closing numbers - racism's up, human rights are down, peace is shaky, war items are hot - the House claims all ties. Jobs are down, money is scarce - and common sense is at an all-time low with heavy trading. Movies were looking better than ever and now no one is looking because, we're starring in a "B" movie. And we would rather have John Wayne...we would rather have John Wayne. 

‘This ain't really your life, 
Ain't really your life, 
Ain't really ain't nothing but a movie.’”

Gil Scott Heron 1949 - 2011

Requiem aeternam dona eis, Domine.
<span> </span>Elian! Pugh!

<span> </span>Here is the deal.  In Florida, we recognize the rights of parents.  The mother and father make the decisions respecting their children.  Elian’s mother died.  The person who makes a decision about a child is the parent; when the mother is dead, that person is the father.  In the Elian case, relatives sought to keep the child from his father.

<span> </span>Before the ideology drove the case, the situation was easy.  When you mother dies, you go with your father.  

<span> </span>You’d think the right wing would recognize the right of parents to raise their children free of governmental interference, but . . . <span> </span>  <span> </span>

Salty Gator said...

homeland security grants at work, fellas

AW1 Tim said...

As were most Southies, as rumor has it.....  ;)

AW1 Tim said...

  Bubba Bob,

  Clinton's decision to return Elian to the living hell of Castro's Cuba is right in keeping with that other American Socialist, FDR's decision to turn away ships full of Jews fleeing Nazi germany and return them to Hirler's camps.

  What is it with leftists and their need to constantly piss on the constitution and impose government diktats on people?

UltimaRatioRegis said...

"<span>You’d think the right wing would recognize the right of parents to raise their children free of governmental interference, but . . ."</span>

Like Waco and Ruby Ridge....  Janet Reno and her Brownshirts.

Therapist1 said...

Mixed feelings on this one as I have been on scene with a TAC Team and seen them in action.  Too many times "high risk" warrants are classified as such to justify the budgets but as I have said time and time again, they deserve a right to go home.  Having your standard police officer try and serve these warrants sometimes results in the police officer being shot, as evidenced by two P.G County Sherrif's Deputies dying serving a mental health warrant.  Everyone second guesses the decisions when things go wrong.  Had they not entered the home and received fire from the home when they called or tried to come out peacefully, then we would be questioning the lack of force.   It is a no win situation.  I say this as I await a subpoena about a case where a 21yo, high, psychotic kid was shot by police who entered the home because they feared he might harm himself or others when he threatened family with a handgun.  He survived despite being gravely wounded.  Once again, no right decision.

The Usual Suspect said...

There is a difference...this was an execution - watch the video.  I have friends and relatives in law enforcement and this is an unprofessional CF of the first order.  It is daylight, the house and its occupants have been under surveillence; I would guess that the PCSD knew the comings and goings pretty well.  They knew that there was a woman and child in there.  If they bothered to investigate a little, they would have known that the occupant was a combat veteran.  I don't buy your scenario.  The police always, ALWAYS play fast and loose wtih the truth.  Look how many times they have had to revise their story on this incident alone.  These ones in Pima County are no better than the thugs they chase.

Therapist1 said...

I am not saying this incident is excusable, I am merely saying that I empathize with going into a home to exercise a warrant and knowing that the person is armed with a wepon that will penetrate your body armor.  It is the reason the SWAT/TAC teams are involved.  They get more trigger time and should be better than your average officer; sometimes though, this is not the case.

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