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  #61  
Old 5 February 2014, 19:48
Crucible guy Crucible guy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Walken1 View Post
A hypothetical question:
What would happen if you had a "vicious dog" in your lawn, secured behind the gate?
This question is for LEOs.
If there was that much motivation to make contact, and you were within your rights to enter the gate, would you then be authorized to shoot the dog if you felt threatened?
Your question is a good one and explains a few other comments. Everyone wants to generalize that every situation is the same and some bright line radiates around your property repelling all persons.

In fact many people have a fence around their yard because they have a regular dog and let it out in yen front yard so they want it fenced. They do not have a sign on the yard and welcome people to knock on their door. That is completely different than the person with a dog that bites. A sign that says beware of dog is an individual situation that has to be treated as such. The important part relates back to the reason the officer is there. If the officer is on the DEA fishing expedition, he would not be justified in shooting the dog. If there was no dog when he entered and he was foolish enough to enter, he could protect himself from an attacking dog even if inside the fence.

If there was a dog standing there barking at him, he should not enter the fenced area and does not immediately have justification to use force to do anything.

If he had been called to a 911 call that there was a man down or woman down in the house and the dog was between them, he should find another way to get in, but if he could not and did not have pepper spray, then he could use force to go and help the person who called for help.

If I was called by a homeowner to escort a federal agent off their land and the Fed LEO was on a consensual encounter, then yes I would go and make sure the fed left.

For the poster that quoted the Texas law, the words say, was notified and refused to leave. When we arrive we are going to ask whoever it is to leave, if they leave, no crime. If you do a citizen's arrest on the person, and the elements were not met, we can accept that person and then release him. I am not well versed in Texas, but that trespassing law is almost the same as where I come from and that is the way it can be interpreted.

Many LE fall in the same situation as you when a LEO shows up at one of our houses. I am not concerned about asking the to leave or telling them I will talk to them outside my house or at the end of the driveway. We are as private as you are and LEO can walk up our driveway the same as yours. I think we are closer on this topic than you might think.

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  #62  
Old 5 February 2014, 19:52
Look. Don'tTouch. Look. Don'tTouch. is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnylaw View Post
If you absolutely needed to get in there for some urgent reason, then yes. If not urgent, then no.
Would following up on an anonymous tip(as in the OP) be urgent?
What about serving court papers, to subpoena a witness for a trial perhaps?
A follow up on a phantom 911 call?

Assuming the arriving officers see a locked gate at the driveway, fencing all around, the presence of dogs within the fence, and no way to approach the house to be able to knock on the door.
  #63  
Old 5 February 2014, 22:19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GPC View Post
LEOs if called would you escort the Agents off the property per your State law?

My big worry would be if they were real agents not posers.
Absent a warrant or probable cause and exigent circumstances they have no authority to remain on private property after being told to leave by the property owner or their legal representative. That goes for any person, not just LE. If a citizen here made a complaint, I would fully identify the agents for the report and remind them of the laws. If they remained for one second more, I'd likely begin calling supervisors and SAICS.

The 4th amendment most certainly applies in this case. The interpretations seem to be the points of contention. It isn't unreasonable for a police officer to approach a door, knock, and attempt a consensual encounter with residents. In fact the argument could be made that community policing necessitates those kinds of interactions with the public if you want to truly make a difference in a specific area. It would be unreasonable to stay, however, once told to leave. For instance, these less than well trained officers.

What got me is that they didn't at least have a local guy with them. There are task forces working that area, I'm sure, and they could've had the courtesy to speak to the guys who likely know you aren't a grower.

Coming to your house and talking to you isn't a 5th amendment issue and your "right to an attorney" per se, doesn't apply. Miranda is reserved for in custody interrogations once you have been suspected of specific criminal activity. In this instance, Mdavid and Mrs. Mdavid were under no obligation to speak to the agents at all and could / should have told them to pound sand once they felt the agents had over-stayed their welcome. For an agent to mention your wife being "evasive" is just stupid.

What started out as a reasonable encounter that could've prevented a very expensive boondoggle of an investigation turned into a "DEA continues less than stellar image" incident.

Look Don't Touch, I'd like to address your scenarios.

Following up on an anonymous tip requires several things from officers with the most basic being an independent effort to validate the tip. That's what these guys were allegedly doing. That's what I would do, particularly if I had been given a directive to follow-up on what I suspected was a guy whose only crime is spending too much time in deco. Not really urgent, especially considering that the same conclusions could likely be reached through minimal surveillance by highly trained agents. Then again, just asking the guy a few basic questions is much faster and a better expenditure of taxpayer monies.

Serving a subpoena or summons is a function of court officers acting on behalf of a judge. They have their own set of circumstances but rarely would they be considered an urgent matter.

There is no such animal as a phantom 911 call. The systems that handle those are computerized in almost all jurisdictions now, and accurate records are maintained. A 911 call has to be answered by law enforcement if there is no contact made between the caller and the dispatcher as the result of a hangup, disconnection, or suspected violence. Those are one circumstance where officers have to be granted a reasonable latitude toward true public safety considerations, where an extra 30 seconds hanging around a locked gate could mean the difference between life and death for the person counting on their (or EMS) assistance.

Many here have used the term "do what your rank can stand." Officers in the 911 call scenario have to make the judgment calls, and often get second opinions from supervisors. The liability of not going through an opened door is likely just as bad as going through it without cause.
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  #64  
Old 5 February 2014, 22:38
Look. Don'tTouch. Look. Don'tTouch. is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yojinbukai View Post
There is no such animal as a phantom 911 call. The systems that handle those are computerized in almost all jurisdictions now, and accurate records are maintained. A 911 call has to be answered by law enforcement if there is no contact made between the caller and the dispatcher as the result of a hangup, disconnection, or suspected violence. Those are one circumstance where officers have to be granted a reasonable latitude toward true public safety considerations, where an extra 30 seconds hanging around a locked gate could mean the difference between life and death for the person counting on their (or EMS) assistance.
The last place I lived at, we had it happen. A police officer showed up at our door and said a 911 call came from our house, and when they tried to call us back they couldn't make contact. Zero chance of any of us inside the house making such a call, on purpose or on accident.

The phone company explained that if a phone line isn't perfect, it may touch/untouch. If you remember the old phones, clicking the receiver on/off rapidly can create a 911 call. They further told me that a lady had these happen so often, they had to completely disconnect her line. Turns out that it's more common than you'd think.

Hearing your response, that it can be treated as urgent, concerns me as I now live in a fenced/locked property with dogs. I'm afraid if this were to happen again, my dogs would be shot or worse.

  #65  
Old 5 February 2014, 23:02
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yojinbukai yojinbukai is offline
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I understand your feelings and concern. Only speaking from my experience, animal control officers are usually available and if time permits, handle the animals with tranqs or nets. I carried leads in my car just so I could tied animals up.

Not every cop thinks every dog is dangerous, but some truly are. In those instances, the officer or their supervisor has to weigh the totality of the circumstances including the perceived danger to any occupants, the safety of the officers responding, and the urgency. Does the life of a dog outweigh the life of a human in reasonably perceived danger?

If you want, why not speak to your local PD or Sheriff's office. Have them meet you and your pets, and make sure they know they can respond to an emergency at your house without fear of being attacked. If your dogs will attack them, write them a letter absolving them of any necessity to enter your house in the event of a medical emergency. I'm sure you understand that firefighters and EMT's aren't going to challenge your dogs and will wait patiently until the scene is safe for them to enter. Hence the police involvement in medical emergencies.

Reaching out to the local officers isn't a bad thing. Lots of people have a genuine dislike and distrust of police. To not at least try to overcome it and become at least peripherally involved in the safety and protection of your neighborhood is short changing the people sworn to service in your area.
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  #66  
Old 5 February 2014, 23:13
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Hell, I had a hit and run property damage only and the suspect vehicle was located at a residence not far from the crash site. I get there, and can see the guy walking around in his house. Only issue with the whole thing was that there was a huge pissed off dog walking the perimeter inside the fence. He wasn't taking too kindly to me. I'm not in the business of getting bit, or shooting dogs unnecessarily, so I stood on the sidewalk and yelled for a bit until he brought his ass out. I wasn't above throwing rocks at his door until he came out if that hadn't worked...
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  #67  
Old 5 February 2014, 23:18
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btq96r btq96r is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yojinbukai View Post
That was painful to watch. The LEO's basically jumped right down to the K-6 level of the guy filming it with no second thought. But I guess their hand was forced since dipstick with the camera didn't respect their authoritah.

I hope that video is used for other departments under the topic of when to walk away.
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  #68  
Old 5 February 2014, 23:30
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SOW_0331 SOW_0331 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dziadek View Post
I cannot urge you more strongly to educate yourself as to the laws of your State as regards those very specific (bolded) terms. I would hate to see a thread on here raising money for your defense some day. You could spend a lot of time in prison insisting you were right to anyone that cared to listen.
I admit to having a pretty bad memory, but I do know I've never had to pay legal fees. Interested in how you came to the theory that I would try to get SOCNET to cover my ass if I screwed up professionally.

As to the legal validity, I'll first state it's been over a year since my last job where that was relevant, I just don't do that work anymore. But when I did, the majority was in four frequent states. Part of any contract, as well as briefing team members, was making sure the contract was clear to our legal obligations and liabilities. I wouldn't sign a contract in which a client asked me to perform an illegal task, in any way, nor would I present a client with anything that wasn't compliant with law. In developing these, several of us would spend several days to weeks reviewing the legal guidelines. In particular, anything concerning the bolded portions if we were to accompany a client to their homes and continue protection. Once we would pick it apart, we'd present any proposed contract to an attorney, or multiple, to make sure our understanding wasn't off base. In many situations, even after getting cleared by legal counsel, we'd meet with local LE (usually a Sheriff) and make sure our proposed SOP wouldn't hinder their response.

In these states, trespassing usually began when someone knowingly gained access to private property without consent. If a client had an open layout with multiple unsecured entry points, or no restricted traffic flow at all, we were obligated to allow the person the chance to leave after they were informed. If they refused to leave, we were to make a judgment call to either persuade them to leave, remove them, or detain them.

To conduct a citizens arrest, we would need express consent from the client to act on their behalf in allowing or denying access. If we had determined someone's presence was unwelcome or hostile, being authorized by the client would allow us to conduct citizens arrest. That doesn't mean we locked them in a basement for a year until we were done with them, in fact all states required immediate notification of local LE, who would then be obligated to take custody of the trespassers while they filed a report. If the client wanted to press charges, he alone could pursue the legal process. Now, where that relates to the above, is when a clear barrier was present. As outlined in another post, if something like a high wall, fence, etc. were in place where a reasonable person would understand they were not to come and go as they pleased, the intentional act of overcoming that barrier could be interpreted as being given the opportunity to avoid trespassing. Again, a lot of that was a judgment call, but if someone scaled a ten foot fence to get on the property, I would be clear of any unlawful detainment charges if I immediately held them until police arrived.

In any situation where I was in a home or on a property in the best interest of a clients safety, and I was attacked or my client was attacked, lethal force (a very undesirable outcome) would be legal if it was clear that a means and intent were present. Intent being overcoming a barrier for entry, a means to kill or do serious bodily harm being pretty universal in every state.

All of this is pretty loosely described as we were informed by LE and legal counsel, several dozen different attorneys by the time I changed jobs. So there's a chance, I'll grant you, that they were all very wrong and I'm very lucky that I never had to dabble in the extreme ends of these areas. Luckily I worked with good guys and great teams who effectively were able to use various other methods to deter/prevent that kind of nonsense.
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  #69  
Old 6 February 2014, 00:27
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The Fat Guy The Fat Guy is offline
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If I had six dogs and five smelled like SOTB and one was inside the gate and three were outside the gate could I shoot or be arrested...


For fucks sake, enough.
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