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(Salon)   The rise of paramilitary police forces: "For the last half of 2009, SWAT teams were deployed 804 times in the state of Maryland, or about 4.5 times a day"   (salon.com) divider line 217
    More: Scary, SWAT team, Maryland, The Washington Post Company, emergency vehicle lighting  
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4968 clicks; posted to Main » on 10 Jul 2013 at 9:56 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-07-10 09:58:54 AM  
An even scarier set of points that I didn't mention in the headline: "According to an analysis by the Baltimore Sun, 94 percent of the state's SWAT deployments were to serve search or arrest warrants, leaving just 6 percent that were raids involving barricades, bank robberies, hostage takings, and other emergency situations. Half of Prince George's County's SWAT deployments were for what were called "misdemeanors and nonserious felonies." More than one hundred times over a six-month period, Prince George's County sent police barreling into private homes for nonserious, nonviolent crimes."

/subby
 
2013-07-10 09:59:39 AM  
Radley Balko?  Yup.  At least it's not about cops shooting dogs.  Or maybe I haven't read far enough yet.
 
2013-07-10 10:00:12 AM  

NewWorldDan: Radley Balko?  Yup.  At least it's not about cops shooting dogs.  Or maybe I haven't read far enough yet.


keep reading
 
2013-07-10 10:00:26 AM  
And all of them were probably deployed in that hellhole called Baltimore.
 
2013-07-10 10:00:30 AM  
No real reason for it, either.  Not every podunk town needs a SWAT team, and for those that do, you don't need to deploy them every farkin' time you serve a warrant on some low-level drug dealers.
 
2013-07-10 10:00:31 AM  
I just finished Spirit of the Laws and this has been on my mind. Very scary, indeed.
 
2013-07-10 10:00:45 AM  

Andy Andy: NewWorldDan: Radley Balko?  Yup.  At least it's not about cops shooting dogs.  Or maybe I haven't read far enough yet.

keep reading


Yeah, that starts about six paragraphs in.
 
2013-07-10 10:01:38 AM  

Feepit: And all of them were probably deployed in that hellhole called Baltimore.


Nah, some of the shiatholes are probably on DC border too.
 
2013-07-10 10:01:52 AM  
"A Republic, madam. If you can keep it." --B. Franklin
 
2013-07-10 10:02:19 AM  
Of course. It's an inevitable consequence of the "tough on crime" mindset.
 
2013-07-10 10:02:30 AM  
Police overreach on this level and then just plain harassment of law abiding people to generate revenue is such a big problem IMO but nobody seems to give that much of a shiat.
 
2013-07-10 10:04:48 AM  

Headso: Police overreach on this level and then just plain harassment of law abiding people to generate revenue is such a big problem IMO but nobody seems to give that much of a shiat.


Freedom costs a buck o five.
 
2013-07-10 10:06:29 AM  
The drug war and the Patriotic Act brought this about. Thanks freedom snatching, oppresive Obama. The real party of Murcans would never stand for this!
 
2013-07-10 10:08:31 AM  
It has spread pretty deep.  I live in Hagerstown MD, and we have a freaking APC that the PD trots out from time to time.  It looks a bit like a BTR-70.  And why not?  IIRC they got it as part of the post 911 craziness, and once you have one, why wouldn't you use it?  And it's going to get used for pretty routine stuff, because we don't really have riots out here, and very few armed standoffs.
 
2013-07-10 10:08:53 AM  
If you build it they will come and if you arm them heavily they'll come up with reasons to use it.
 
2013-07-10 10:09:32 AM  

dittybopper: No real reason for it, either.  Not every podunk town needs a SWAT team, and for those that do, you don't need to deploy them every farkin' time you serve a warrant on some low-level drug dealers.


But then how are they supposed to justify bloated budgets?
 
2013-07-10 10:10:06 AM  

rudemix: The drug war and the Patriotic Act brought this about. Thanks freedom snatching, oppresive Obama. The real party of Murcans would never stand for this!


The disappointment that many of us are experiencing with Obama isn't that he instituted a lot of lunacy, but that after a campaign based on clearing that shiat up, he now seems oddly cool with it.
 
2013-07-10 10:10:49 AM  
SWAT was sold as an extraordinary measure to be made available in extraordinary circumstances. Barney Fife and his one bullet weren't taking down the North Hollywood bank robbers or the Columbine shooters and it's unreasonable to believe if we're going to live in a society where high powered weaponry is freely available to virtually anyone that sometimes criminals aren't going to exploit that freedom in order to stage comic-book-level attacks like that one. Part of the price of wide-reaching freedom is that some people will abuse it to hurt others and we should be prepared for that fact.

That said, extraordinary means extraordinary, but just like tasers, it's just too convenient for lazy cops to deploy SWAT on everything instead of taking the extra effort to do their jobs properly, and few people seem to have a problem with it because "hey, they must be criminals, right?"

Deploying an extraordinary force should face extraordinary consequences when it's done improperly. Anybody who orders the deployment of SWAT against any offender for which there is no history or reasonable expectation of violence should face immediate investigation and, if found to have improperly deployed the team, felony charges with prison time. If a member of SWAT kills an innocent or non-violent person, that should immediately end their career with the possibility that they face a charge of at least negligent homicide depending on the circumstances.

If you're going to claim the need to have access to extraordinary force for extraordinary situations I expect you to be held to extraordinary standards.

/ haha... yea right...
// hold on, someone's at the door
 
2013-07-10 10:11:02 AM  
Hey, it pays to be prepared for Red Dawn!
 
2013-07-10 10:11:59 AM  

rudemix: The drug war and the Patriotic Act brought this about.


While that may be true neither party gets a pass. Obama has done NOTHING to reign this in. He has picked up the patriot act and ran with it. This issue is bigger than your petty partisan bullshiat.
 
2013-07-10 10:12:43 AM  

fireclown: The disappointment that many of us are experiencing with Obama isn't that he instituted a lot of lunacy, but that after a campaign based on clearing that shiat up, he now seems oddly cool with it.


truthfact
 
2013-07-10 10:12:58 AM  

rudemix: The drug war and the Patriotic Act brought this about. Thanks freedom snatching, oppresive Obama. The real party of Murcans would never stand for this!


Actually, it's the "center" that doesn't mind it, and in fact encourages it.  Only the far left and far right complain about it relatively consistently, and then mainly when their ox is being gored.

Sad fact is that most people are OK with having modern-day stormtroopers serve misdemeanor drug warrants.
 
2013-07-10 10:13:23 AM  

rudemix: The drug war and the Patriotic Act brought this about. Thanks freedom snatching, oppresive Obama. The real party of Murcans would never stand for this!


Stand for it? They created it.
 
2013-07-10 10:13:30 AM  
It's not fascism when we do it.  How does the quote go again?

"always there will be the intoxication of power, constantly increasing and constantly growing subtler. Always, at every moment, there will be the thrill of victory, the sensation of trampling on an enemy who is helpless. If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face - forever."
 
2013-07-10 10:13:32 AM  

dittybopper: No real reason for it, either.  Not every podunk town needs a SWAT team, and for those that do, you don't need to deploy them every farkin' time you serve a warrant on some low-level drug dealers.


Come on. How else are they supposed to play at being soldiers, without any of the risk?
 
2013-07-10 10:14:12 AM  

fireclown: rudemix: The drug war and the Patriotic Act brought this about. Thanks freedom snatching, oppresive Obama. The real party of Murcans would never stand for this!

The disappointment that many of us are experiencing with Obama isn't that he instituted a lot of lunacy, but that after a campaign based on clearing that shiat up, he now seems oddly cool with it.


Met the new boss, same as the old boss....

/You can't say you weren't warned.
 
2013-07-10 10:15:00 AM  

dittybopper: rudemix: The drug war and the Patriotic Act brought this about. Thanks freedom snatching, oppresive Obama. The real party of Murcans would never stand for this!

Actually, it's the "center" that doesn't mind it, and in fact encourages it.  Only the far left and far right complain about it relatively consistently, and then mainly when their ox is being gored.

Sad fact is that most people are OK with having modern-day stormtroopers serve misdemeanor drug warrants.


I'm in the center and I hate this kind of shiat.
 
2013-07-10 10:15:08 AM  

dittybopper: No real reason for it, either.  Not every podunk town needs a SWAT team, and for those that do, you don't need to deploy them every farkin' time you serve a warrant on some low-level drug dealers.


Not every podunk town has one. And unfortunately those "low-level" drug dealers are usually armed.

http://www.odmp.org/officer/19580-police-officer-nathaniel-taylor-jr
 
2013-07-10 10:15:27 AM  
yum. barbecue. tl;dr.
 
2013-07-10 10:16:29 AM  

fireclown: The disappointment that many of us are experiencing with Obama isn't that he instituted a lot of lunacy, but that after a campaign based on clearing that shiat up, he now seems oddly cool with it.


I don't know why you would be surprised by that. Early on in his first run while he was still a Senator he voted for telco immunity after making some hay about how wrong it is to spy on Americans. It's been pretty clear for a very long time that he has little problem with most of the "light authoritarian" policies of predecessors. He as attempted some significant reform, and has gotten some (ACA anybody?), but on most of the other things he's tried he's been stymied by the foot-stamping stupidity of the republicans and their endless temper tantrum over losing the White House.

He was clearly the best choice put forward in both cycles, but anybody who thought he was going to be anything but the center-right politician that he is just wasn't paying any attention. There are a hell of a lot of people out there with much more sweeping visions than his mediocre pap, but those people don't elected becasue for whatever reason the American public has decided that the status quo, no matter what it is, is the only acceptable option and that anybody seeking to move the country in any direction more than a few baby steps is some sort of radical.

Our country, as a voting group, isn't very bright, is what I'm getting at here.
 
2013-07-10 10:17:14 AM  

megarian: I just finished Spirit of the Laws and this has been on my mind. Very scary, indeed.


[...googles...]
How have I never read this?
 
2013-07-10 10:17:35 AM  
FTA:  "Calvo's dogs Payton and Chase were dead by the time Calvo was escorted to the kitchen."

fark the police.
 
2013-07-10 10:17:36 AM  

dittybopper: fireclown: rudemix: The drug war and the Patriotic Act brought this about. Thanks freedom snatching, oppresive Obama. The real party of Murcans would never stand for this!

The disappointment that many of us are experiencing with Obama isn't that he instituted a lot of lunacy, but that after a campaign based on clearing that shiat up, he now seems oddly cool with it.

Met the new boss, same as the old boss....

/You can't say you weren't warned.


I don't think we're SHOCKED, exactly.  Just very disappointed.
 
2013-07-10 10:18:58 AM  

Solaris: dittybopper: No real reason for it, either.  Not every podunk town needs a SWAT team, and for those that do, you don't need to deploy them every farkin' time you serve a warrant on some low-level drug dealers.

Not every podunk town has one. And unfortunately those "low-level" drug dealers are usually armed.

http://www.odmp.org/officer/19580-police-officer-nathaniel-taylor-jr


End the war on the drugs. Problem solved.
 
2013-07-10 10:19:41 AM  

Solaris: dittybopper: No real reason for it, either.  Not every podunk town needs a SWAT team, and for those that do, you don't need to deploy them every farkin' time you serve a warrant on some low-level drug dealers.

Not every podunk town has one. And unfortunately those "low-level" drug dealers are usually armed.

http://www.odmp.org/officer/19580-police-officer-nathaniel-taylor-jr


So one cop being killed once in Chicago justifies no knock warrants and throwing flash-bangs in peoples living rooms in Maryland.  Ok then.  Authoritarian apologists like you frighten me.
 
2013-07-10 10:19:52 AM  

Headso: Police overreach on this level and then just plain harassment of law abiding people to generate revenue is such a big problem IMO but nobody seems to give that much of a shiat.


Because it's also those "other people" that are affected.  Nobody cares until it's their door SWAT is breaking down from a mistyped address on a search warrant.
 
2013-07-10 10:20:48 AM  

dragonchild: fireclown: The disappointment that many of us are experiencing with Obama isn't that he instituted a lot of lunacy, but that after a campaign based on clearing that shiat up, he now seems oddly cool with it.

truthfact


As someone who came of age during the Vietnam misadventure, let me offer you this advice about politicians:

Republicans are red,
Democrats are blue.
And neither party
Gives a fark about you.

/meet the new boss, etc
 
2013-07-10 10:20:51 AM  
None of this is surprising.
Even before 9/11 you would find SWAT teams being used in situations where normal cops would have sufficed. It's justification on paper for their existence. I remember reading in the mid 90s in MacLeans (a Canadian magazine) talking about this and the concern at that point was that when SWAT teams show up the situation tends to escalate and quickly thus justifying their need. They gave an example in BC where a SWAT team had been called to a domestic disturbance but went to the wrong house. The owner of the house had been robbed recently and saw some people skulking around his house. He went outside with a shotgun and you can see where this went..
Then after 9/11 there was so much money being thrown around for security, even the smallest podunk town could afford to set up their own tactical force.
 
2013-07-10 10:21:02 AM  
Does anyone have a map of the locations?
 
2013-07-10 10:21:13 AM  

rudemix: The drug war and the Patriotic Act brought this about. Thanks freedom snatching, oppresive Obama. The real party of Murcans would never stand for this!


This guy--and criminals like him--is the reason why there are SWAT teams everywhere.

members.home.nl

Here's his customized BAR

texashideout.tripod.com

Although I believe he carried a BAR with a cut-down stock and barrel along with a pump 12 gauge similarly cut-down.

And the rise of the FBI and SWAT teams coincided with a change in crimes committed by guys like Barrow. The feds got involved when rich people started getting kidnapped, murdered and/or paying out huge amounts of ransom.

The hoi polloi can rob, rape, shoot, murder, burn, kidnap all the lower and middle class people they want. Nothing changes until rich people lose their money or their lives or both.
 
2013-07-10 10:21:28 AM  
Anyone else ever notice that the people who are OK with the drug war tend to be the people most outraged by groups like MADD and the various drunk driving and alcohol laws?
 
2013-07-10 10:21:57 AM  

Gunslinger013: rudemix: The drug war and the Patriotic Act brought this about.

While that may be true neither party gets a pass. Obama has done NOTHING to reign this in. He has picked up the patriot act and ran with it. This issue is bigger than your petty partisan bullshiat.


Anyone who expects a US leader in this day and age to taper back oppressive policies is a fool, or willfully ignorant. The thanks Obama is the joke du jour about this shiat. America's decent into Police Statism is a fact that will not be fixed.
 
2013-07-10 10:24:16 AM  
"At the bottom of the stairs, they bound my hands, pulled me across the living room, and forced me to kneel on the floor in front of my broken door. I thought it was a home invasion. I was fearful that I was about to be executed."

People should know when they are conquered.
 
2013-07-10 10:25:41 AM  

StrangeQ: Headso: Police overreach on this level and then just plain harassment of law abiding people to generate revenue is such a big problem IMO but nobody seems to give that much of a shiat.

Because it's also those "other people" that are affected.  Nobody cares until it's their door SWAT is breaking down from a mistyped address on a search warrant.


Most all of us have been annoyed by bullshiat tickets given by an arrogant douchebag type cop before though, you'd figure we could all atleast come together on that one.
 
2013-07-10 10:25:47 AM  

Source4leko: Solaris: dittybopper: No real reason for it, either.  Not every podunk town needs a SWAT team, and for those that do, you don't need to deploy them every farkin' time you serve a warrant on some low-level drug dealers.

Not every podunk town has one. And unfortunately those "low-level" drug dealers are usually armed.

http://www.odmp.org/officer/19580-police-officer-nathaniel-taylor-jr

So one cop being killed once in Chicago justifies no knock warrants and throwing flash-bangs in peoples living rooms in Maryland.  Ok then.  Authoritarian apologists like you frighten me.


Yes, because giving one example and making no reference to no knock warrants, flash bangs, etc makes me that way.  Thanks for your quick assessment.
 
2013-07-10 10:26:17 AM  
 
2013-07-10 10:27:20 AM  

dionysusaur: "A Republic, madam. If you can keep it." --B. Franklin


Gone. Obama's now ordered Federal employees to spy on each other. From McClatchy this morning:

http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2013/07/09/196211/linchpin-for-obamas-pla n- to-predict.html
 
2013-07-10 10:27:57 AM  

dj_spanmaster: megarian: I just finished Spirit of the Laws and this has been on my mind. Very scary, indeed.

[...googles...]
How have I never read this?


It's pretty spectacular.
 
2013-07-10 10:28:00 AM  
365.25 multiplied by 4.5 equals 804 now?
Oh, ok.
 
2013-07-10 10:30:21 AM  

StoPPeRmobile: "At the bottom of the stairs, they bound my hands, pulled me across the living room, and forced me to kneel on the floor in front of my broken door. I thought it was a home invasion. I was fearful that I was about to be executed."

People should know when they are conquered.


Vae Victis
 
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