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A SWAT team investigating a young man allegedly in possession of a small quantity of drugs tossed a flash grenade into a baby’s crib, leaving a hole in his chest with critical burns in a pool of blood in a singed crib. The police denied the mother access to her burned child while they ravaged the house looking for an individual who didn’t live there, and drugs that were never found.

From the child’s mother:

The only silver lining I can possibly see is that my baby Bou Bou’s story might make us angry enough that we stop accepting brutal SWAT raids as a normal way to fight the “war on drugs.” I know that this has happened to other families, here in Georgia and across the country. I know that SWAT teams are breaking into homes in the middle of the night, more often than not just to serve search warrants in drug cases. I know that too many local cops have stockpiled weapons that were made for soldiers to take to war. And as is usually the case with aggressive policing, I know that people of color and poor people are more likely to be targeted. I know these things because of the American Civil Liberties Union’s new report, and because I’m working with them to push for restraints on the use of SWAT.

As of June 24, 2014, the child was taken out of a medically induced coma for his doctors to begin rehabilitation and assess the extent of his brain damage that resulted from this senseless overreach of police power exerted in furtherance of a senseless prohibitionist drug policy.

Author Photo


Ben is an experienced trial lawyer who earned his law degree from The George Washington University in Washington, D.C. He was trained in trial practice at the nation’s preeminent Public Defender agency, the federally funded Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia, described by United States Attorney General Eric Holder as “the best public defender office in the country.”

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