This story will piss you off.
A Nevada family has filed a federal lawsuit citing the rarely invoked Third Amendment, alleging police unlawfully barged into their homes and forcefully evicted them in order to set up surveillance depots to spy on a neighbor.
The incident took place in July 2011 and gives a new appreciation to the third item on the Bill of Rights, which is supposed to prohibit the government from forcing people to house soldiers.
In full, the Third Amendment states:
No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.
The complaint alleges plaintiff Anthony Mitchell, a resident of the southwestern Las Vegas suburb of Henderson, was contacted by Henderson Officer Christopher Worley and told his home was needed for police to gain a “’tactical advantage’ against the occupant of the neighboring house.”
According to Courthouse News, the complaint states, “Anthony Mitchell told the officer that he did not want to become involved and that he did not want police to enter his residence. Although Worley continued to insist that plaintiff should leave his residence, plaintiff clearly explained that he did not intend to leave his home or to allow police to occupy his home.”
Police were not content taking “No” for an answer. The complaint goes on to detail the subsequent raid that followed after Mitchell refused to allow officers entry:
“The officers banged forcefully on the door and loudly commanded Anthony Mitchell to open the door to his residence.
“Surprised and perturbed, plaintiff Anthony Mitchell immediately called his mother (plaintiff Linda Mitchell) on the phone, exclaiming to her that the police were beating on his front door.
“Seconds later, officers, including Officer Rockwell, smashed open plaintiff Anthony Mitchell’s front door with a metal ram as plaintiff stood in his living room.
“As plaintiff Anthony Mitchell stood in shock, the officers aimed their weapons at Anthony Mitchell and shouted obscenities at him and ordered him to lie down on the floor.
“Fearing for his life, plaintiff Anthony Mitchell dropped his phone and prostrated himself onto the floor of his living room, covering his face and hands.”Addressing plaintiff as ‘asshole’, officers, including Officer Snyder, shouted conflicting orders at Anthony Mitchell, commanding him to both shut off his phone, which was on the floor in front of his head, and simultaneously commanding him to ‘crawl’ toward the officers.
“Confused and terrified, plaintiff Anthony Mitchell remained curled on the floor of his living room, with his hands over his face, and made no movement.
When Mitchell failed to immediately comply with the officer’s conflicting orders, he was shot at close range with at least three “PepperBall” rounds, non-lethal air rifle rounds similar to paintballs which are typically accurate at distances of up to 60 feet.