Public Enemy Number One Report

The initial report is from back in August and I seem to have missed it at the time.

A Baltimore SWAT team
conducted a 4:30am raid on the Noel family home after finding marijuana
seeds and "trace" amounts of cocaine in the family’s outdoor trash can.
After battering down the door, they deployed a flashbang grenade, then
rushed up the steps to the bedroom of Cheryl and Charles Noel.

Cheryl Noel’s stepdaughter had been murdered several years earlier,
and her son had recently been jumped by thugs on his way home. So the
family had a legal, registered handgun in the home, and Noel had reason
to be frightened. When a SWAT officer kicked open the bedroom door,
Noel sat up in bed with the gun, apparently pointed downward, not at
the officer. The officer, who was wearing a helmet, mask, shield, and
bulletproof vest, and who came in behind a bulletproof ballistic
shield, fired twice. Noel slumped over, and the gun slipped out of her
hand. The officer then walked over to her and ordered her to move
further away from the gun. She couldn’t, of course. When she didn’t, he
shot her a third time, essentially from point-blank range.

Noel’s family has filed a federal civil suit, asking as it were, that the fox repent for predation of hens. The Baltimore County Police Department, in response, has awarded Carlos Artson a Silver Star, which "recognizes service where valor, courage, intelligence, and bravery are demonstrated over and above…" and citation: "On January 21, 2005, Officer Carlos Artson saved himself and his fellow officer from being shot. Officer Artson was confronted by a woman pointing a loaded handgun at him, during the service of a high risk, ‘no knock’ search warrant for an ongoing narcotics investigation."

As Radley assesses:

The officer who shot Mrs. Noel
was wearing a bulletproof vest, a bulletproof helmet and face shield,
and was carrying a bulletproof ballistic shield. He shot her twice from
the doorway, then a third time from point-blank range. Mrs. Noel was
wearing a nightgown. "Valor, courage, honor, and bravery," indeed.

There is more commentary at other blogs worth reading, like this:

We are talking about the mentality that did not hear the sound of its
own conscience as it rounded up other human beings and loaded them into
cattle-cars at rifle-point.

As for me, the past couple of weeks have seen an event close to home that while not nearly as tragic as this story, operates from the same set of principles. It doesn’t involve me personally, but a key employee in my company, and the story is nearly beyond belief. I’ll need to be careful with details because these people have suffered at the hands of Public Enemy Number One quite enough already, but I’ll tell you the story as soon as I can.

Just another day here in the "Land of the Free."

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  1. mandrill on November 21, 2006 at 00:53

    Looks to me like war is being waged but only one side seems to be fighting. This kind of thing is the reason you have a right to bear arms in the first place.

  2. Reno on December 12, 2006 at 09:52

    Here's the really frightening thing about these "No Knock" entries, a judge does not sign a "No Knock" warrant. As the law stands today, a judge signs a simple search warrant and the person in charge of the investigation makes the decision whether or not to use a "No Knock" entry. This decision is made at the time of the warrant service so it is not scrutinized or justified until after the fact and then it is extremely hard to hold him accountable for those actions. Police, especially narcotics and SWAT have a mind set that people are guilty until proven innocent. Do we really want to let them continue to have this kind of power?

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