Chicago (CBS) — CBS 2 Investigators first broke the story. Police raided the wrong homes and pointed guns at innocent people. Now, CBS 2 Investigator Dave Savini questions Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson about how often this happens.
“We do everything we can to ensure that we are targeting the right location,” said Superintendent Johnson.
How often Chicago Police gets warrants with bad addresses is not known – CPD has so far not released the information.
The CBS 2 Investigators broke the story of a wrong raid on the Mendez family’s apartment. Guns were pointed at the family, and an innocent Gilbert Mendez was handcuffed in front of his children Jack and Peter, who were terrified.
“Just the saddest moment,” said Peter Mendez.
About these wrong raids, Superintendent Johnson said, “we try to provide the officers all the training we can, to ensure that type of thing doesn’t happen.”
But it is happening – repeatedly.
Sharnia Phillips says a bad warrant led to her home being raided and guns pointed at her.
“I could have been killed,” said Sharnia Phillips.
Cynthia Eason said it happened in her family’s home too. She said police held a gun to her 13-year-old grandson’s head.
“If he had to move, tripped or anything, who’s to say what the cop would have done,” said Eason.
Today a lawsuit was filed in that case by the family’s attorney Al Hofeld, Jr.
“Officers terrorized a totally innocent family,” said Hofeld, Jr.
“We do everything we can, but we’re not perfect,” said Superintendent Johnson about wrong raids. “We’re human. Sometimes we make mistakes.”
For months now, CBS 2 Investigators have repeatedly requested search warrant information from CPD, including a list of all the wrong raids. Nothing has been released.
In the Mendez case, police were caught on body camera video saying they were at the wrong place.
“He gave us the wrong (expletive) apartment,” said an officer on the video. “He gave us the wrong apartment.”
But officers continued to search the apartment.
When asked whether CPD tracks these wrong raids, Superintendent Johnson said, “yeah we look at it.”
When asked if he has actual numbers, he said, “I don’t have it off the top of my head, but we do have that.”
CBS 2 Investigators will continue to pursue getting those numbers and covering this growing pattern of bad raids.