Sheriff Terrell on Baby Burned by Grenade: “I stand behind what our team did.”

Child burned by distraction device during raid

“The door that we entered was the door that we bought dope out of – that’s why entered at that door,” Terrell said. “Our team went by the book. Given the same scenario, we’ll do the same thing again. I stand behind what our team did.”

I previously wrote on the topic of the baby who had his face burned by a drug task force. I said it is important we know the names of each and every law enforcement officer involved in institutional antisocial behavior. This is why. Day by day the illusion that law enforcement can police itself fades. And when the criminal justice system no longer works to provide justice — when individuals can no longer seek justice from the state — individuals must seek justice elsewhere.

In the above article, County Sheriff Joey Terrell describes his side of the story in some detail. So, if you want to hear the police side, have a go. Here are a few gems:

“Our team captain asked the normal questions – is there children?” Terrell said. “If there’s children involved in a house, we do not use any kind of distraction devices in those houses. We just don’t take the chance on it.”

But there were no indications of children in the home.

“According to the confidential informant, there were no children,” Terrell said. “When they made the buy, they didn’t see any children or any evidence of children there, so we proceeded with our standard operation.”

Ah, the use of a confidential informant. It is not uncommon that confidential informants contribute to law enforcement corruption. Many informants are individuals coerced by the threat of prison or working as “hired guns” to set people up. Confidential informants have even gone as far as planting crack on innocent people for the police. For more information on the use of confidential informants you may want to check out Alexandra Natapoff at Snitching.org.

Mountain Judicial Circuit Narcotics Criminal Investigation and Suppression Team agents obtained a search warrant for the residence, with the no knock entry provision approved by Habersham County Chief Magistrate Judge Jim Butterworth.

There’s a name.

“We check the door; if it’s unlocked we enter,” Terrell said. “The door was locked, so they breached the door. There was an obstruction at the door. They tossed a ‘flash bang’. Our team leader has been through the school on the use of the flash bangs – the distraction devices – is the only way we can even purchase them. We have to have a license, he has to go through the training.”

“We keep asking ourselves, ‘how did this happen?’,” Terrell said. “No one can answer that – you can’t answer that. You try and do everything right. Bad things can happen. That’s just the world we live in. Bad things happen to good people.

“The baby didn’t deserve this,” Terrell said. “The family didn’t deserve this – this family was displaced from another home down here and apparently just moved in with her.”

How it happened — law enforcement procedures and the drug war. Without the practice of no-knock warrants, militarized policing and the drug war this entire course of events would never have taken place.

“The person I blame in this whole thing is the person selling the drugs,” Terrell said. “Wanis Thonetheva, that’s the person I blame in all this. They are no better than a domestic terrorist, because they don’t care about families – they didn’t care about the family, the children living in that household – to be selling dope out of it, to be selling methamphetamine out of it. All they care about is making money.”

I blame the police. And I blame the state for the drug war.

And the terrorist card is quaint, coming from the man who participated in burning a baby’s face with a grenade.Habersham County Sheriffs Office

Visit, call or fax:

Habersham Co. Sheriff’s Office
1000 Detention Drive
Clarkesville, GA 30523
Office: (706) 839-0500
Fax: (706) 839-7065

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