Read every single word of this shameful story.
Is there a "silver lining" in this story? Yes, that the toddler who had a grenade lobbed into his crib is not dead.
But other than that, this is a disgusting and horrifying tale of abuse of power, of lies, of an arrogant lack of remorse and disgraceful and dangerous behaviour at every single level of officialdom.
Lies upon lies, arrogance and endangerment of life by power drunk state law enforcement officials.
And believe me, this is what can happen in any country where the sanctity of individual life is eroded by the ruling culture.
"Shortly after midnight on May 28, 2014, Habersham County, Georgia,
Deputy Sheriff Nikki Autry asked Magistrate Judge James Butterworth for a
"no knock" warrant to search a house on Lakeview Heights Circle in
Cornelia. In her application, Autry, a special agent with the Mountain
Judicial Circuit Narcotics Criminal Investigation and Suppression Team,
said a confidential informant "was able to purchase a quantity of
methamphetamine from Wanis Thonetheva" at the house she wanted to
search. She said the informant was known to be "true and reliable,"
having "provided information in the past that has led to criminal
charges on individuals selling illegal narcotics in Habersham County."
She added that she had personally "confirmed that there is heavy traffic
in and out of the residence."
"According to a federal indictment announced last week, none of that was true."
"A report on
the raid provided by Terrell implied that the police did all they
reasonably could to make sure there were no children in the home.
"According to all the information able to be gathered at the time," it
says, "there were no children or dogs at the residence."
"But the Phonesavanhs had been living in the house for about six
weeks, and anyone paying attention would have noticed signs of children.
In their lawsuit,
the Phonesavanhs note that "a clearly identifiable case" for Bou Bou's
portable playpen was sitting outside the house, next to the door
breached by the SWAT team. The minivan parked in the driveway through
which the cops approached the house contained four child seats and "had
figures affixed to the rear window indicating the presence of a family
with several children." In the yard were "children's toys, including a
plastic child's pool."
"Even if the cops missed these clues in their
hurry to break down the door, rudimentary surveillance prior to the raid
would have revealed the presence of children, who frequently played
with their father in the front yard."
Thank goodness there are still honourable men in America. John Horn, the acting U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Georgia, had this to say:
"Our criminal justice system depends upon our police officers' sworn duty to present facts truthfully and accurately," Horn said last
"There is no arrest that is worth selling out the integrity of
our law enforcement officers. In this case, Autry is charged with making
false statements to a judge in order to obtain search and arrest
warrants. Without her false statements, there was no probable cause to
search the premises for drugs or to make the arrest. And in this case,
the consequences of the unlawful search were tragic."
That is exactly right.
Honour and truth are the cornerstones of civilized societies. The rule of law depends on each individual, and especially individuals who have the power, and gunpower of the state in their hands, to act honourably, and to be very seriously punished when they abuse that power.
The honourable, as Mark Steyn often has said, cannot force bad politicians or other corrupt implements of the state to make good choices and to behave properly. But they, we, must make it impossible, or at the very least, exceptionally difficult for those individuals to do the wrong thing.
We must never, ever relent.