A state police raid on a Winthrop Avenue apartment netted no drugs or arrests—but it left Tomas Torres hospitalized and his apartment in tatters.
Torres (pictured), who’s 54, said state cops broke down the door of his first-floor Winthrop Avenue apartment Wednesday afternoon, punched him in the face, stomped on his head, and then laughed at him as they tossed his apartment looking for drugs.
Police said he tried to jump out the window, then resisted their efforts to detain and handcuff him.
They had the wrong guy, said Torres. The police found nothing in his apartment and released him to go to the hospital, where he said he was told he has a fractured arm, he said.
It’s the second recent incident in which an unarmed New Havener has accused a state drug cop of brutality. (Click here to read about the previous one.)
Lt. J. Paul Vance, spokesman for the state police, said he had no record of state police action anywhere in New Haven on Wednesday. That doesn’t mean that a search warrant wasn’t executed, he said. He’d have a record if an arrest were made, he said.
“That sounds a little suspect right off the bat,” Vance said when told of Torres’ complaints. “We don’t beat people up as a regular course of business.”
Lt. Jeff Hoffman, who oversees the city’s Tactical Narcotics Unit, confirmed that the Statewide Narcotics Task Force executed a warrant at 280 Winthrop Ave. Wednesday afternoon. Two New Haven cops are assigned to that task force and one of them may have taken part in the warrant execution, Hoffman said.
“I know that the task force had a lawful search and seizure warrant for that apartment,” Hoffman said. He said he wasn’t present at the police action. Cops have to convince a judge that they have evidence that drugs are being sold at a location in order to obtain a warrant.
Hoffman said Torres tried to jump out the window when police showed up. Then he resisted detention when police pulled him back in, he said.
Cops always knock and announce when they execute warrants; Torres must have known police were at the door, Hoffman argued.
Police did not charge Torres with any offense. In the end, they put him in an ambulance to go to the Hospital of St. Raphael to recover from his wounds.
“They way that guy was, they didn’t need to go that far,” said someone with knowledge of the incident. “They had enough guys. They must have had at least seven. I’m talking about big guys, husky, [handling] an old man. Even the short guy [the state cop Torres said hit him]—he was stocky.”
On Thursday afternoon, Torres (pictured) offered his account of the incident. Here’s what he said happened:
It was after 4 p.m. He was home at his first-floor Section 8 apartment at the corner of Winthrop Avenue and Chapel Street, where he’s lived since May. He survives off of disability support from Social Security.
He was cooking pasteles and watching “Caso Cerrado” on TV when he heard someone pounding on his door.
Torres thought it was the crack dealers or users who sometimes hang out in the hallway of the building along with prostitutes. He said he keeps a pool stick behind the door to protect himself because he’s worried for his safety with the dealers hanging around.
He asked who was there. No answer.
Torres looked out the window and saw cop cars. As he moved to the door, it flew open and cops poured in. Someone punched him in the face. They shoved him to the ground. One state cop, a short man, ground his boot into Torres’ face as he lay on the floor.
The cops kept asking him, “Where are the drugs?” Torres said he didn’t have any drugs.
The cops put Torres in a chair and handcuffed him, still asking where the drugs were. They laughed as they teased a cop who had gotten Torres’ blood on his jeans.
The cops started claiming they had fought with him because he had the pool stick nearby and it posed a threat to their safety. Torres argued with them, saying they were inventing that story.
Eventually, a Spanish-speaking New Haven cop arrived and was able to speak for him, Torres said. The cops then put him on the ambulance.
Hours later, with his face swollen and his arm in a sling, Torres arrived home at 1 a.m. to find his apartment trashed. A mirror hung askew on the wall. Couch cushions had been flung about, along with his belongings. Dry spaghetti and rice spilled from his tiny kitchen into his carpeted living room. In the bedroom, Torres’ mattress had been knocked off the milk crates that support it up. Clothes had been pulled out of his closet and lay in a pile on the floor.
Torres said he has contacted a lawyer and is looking into trying to sue the police.
His sister, who lives nearby, expressed outrage at the incident.
“He’s a human,” she said. “Not an animal.”
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posted by: Tired of the nonsense on December 23, 2011 1:29pm
I read with great amazement at the words of Lt. Vance. Does he NOT see the news stories or hear about the protest against police brutality and abuse of citizens? Who is policing the police? Just because they were state police does not mean this wasn’t a blatant case of brutality. There really isn’t a reason for ANYONE come away from a incident looking that, especially when it is well know that when serving a warrant there is numerous officers with all kind of back up. This was just one person. He may not have been the most cooperative, but look at this persons face. Was THAT necessary? What about the great ‘taser’ that everyone is in love with now? Just seems odd to me that this older gentlemen came out looking like he did with so many police there to quash any incident that may have occurred.
posted by: confused on December 23, 2011 1:37pm
Is this the new form of community policing….Getting to know people….If it happened as he says it did then he definetly should be seeing an attorney. Of course the other side is if the report of resisting is true then he needs to see a good criminal attorney
posted by: East Rock Res on December 23, 2011 1:48pm
unbelievable…..the murder stories usually have me wondering why alot of people refuse to cooperate with the police. Now I think I know why.
Who will reimburse this man for his medical expenses? Who will reimburse him for the damages to his furniture? Well I guess the taxpayers of this city (myself included) will be paying up when the lawsuit is settled. I’m thrilled that my tax dollars will be spent to deal with legal fees due to police brutality and negligence.
posted by: JBC on December 23, 2011 2:10pm
7 cop vs one old guy on disability hardly seems like a fair fight. Even if he did resist arrest, how is this justification for breaking his arm and bashing his face in? There is no excuse for police brutality. Considering what the cops did to him, I would have tried to jump out of a window, too.
BTW, I saw 7 cop cars filled with NHPD detain an obviously mentally ill individual on my street recently. No physical violence occurred, but I was shocked that they laughed at him as during the entire incident. Shameful.
posted by: Just awful, but... on December 23, 2011 2:23pm
Terrible but why not just open the door if you have nothing to hide? Jumping out the window seems extreme.
posted by: OMG on December 23, 2011 2:27pm
Where is the mayor or the new chief??? Police brutality in New Haven MUST be stopped!!!
posted by: THREEFIFTHS on December 23, 2011 2:42pm
Who pays for the hospital Bill.
posted by: meh on December 23, 2011 3:11pm
this type of incident serves to enforce the sentiment that cops are ... unworthy and incapable of professionally executing their sworn duties to serve and protect. This so called task force should publicly apologize for the brutality suffered by Mr. Torres. Shameful!
Wouldn’t the state be responsible for any lawsuit that might occur, not the municipality that the incident occurred in?
posted by: Brian on December 23, 2011 3:44pm
I am a man who believes in the rule of law, law and order, all those kinds of things. But, I have to ask: what the fuck is going on here? This seems like way-over-the-top reaction by the police. And then to mock the man and trash his humble little apartment? Something is way out of whack here and something has got to be done. I know we all hear about the way cops protect one another and how cops always win in police brutality cases, but doesn’t this seem like egregious police behaviour? What is this country coming to? I can hear some people saying “that’s how it is man.” I don’t think it has to be that way. I call on the Board of Aldermen and the mayor and the State Police to find out what has been done in this particular incident and punish those who have broken the law. We are a civilized country?
posted by: awful on December 23, 2011 4:17pm
Coming on the heals of the Chris Hoffman boondoggle, this really frames an awful picture of a city where public officials act with outrageous disrespect and impunity. It’s awful to see a hurt and humiliated person, left with a wrecked home. Doesn’t the Police Department have any responsibility to at least clean-up and set to right a place they have destroyed? To pay for a hotel to stay in until his home is livable again? An injured and disabled person To have invaded the home of the wrong guy, beat him up, leave him further disabled, and not offer an apology or help is really disgusting. It compounds the insult and injury of the first assault.
I’m sorry, Mr. Torres, that you are so badly hurt, and that your home and peace have been destroyed. I hope your recovery is swift, and that you succeed in your efforts to find justice and recompense
posted by: Mike on December 23, 2011 4:29pm
I’d hate to draw any conclusions on this article besides the fact that they should have been able to control the man better than this.
posted by: seen it all on December 23, 2011 5:02pm
If these cops act anywhere near how they drive that guys lucky to be alive. I applaud the fact that these guys risk their lives to keep the real bad guys off the street, but PLEASE stop pretending your above the law and you can treat people like wild animals attacking you cause your not.
posted by: Former PD on December 23, 2011 5:07pm
I have a couple of simple comments:
If the suspect is injured this badly during the raid and he isn’t charged with anything, police misconduct took place somewhere and this incident should be investigated. If his injuries are justified, he should have been charged with something, e. g. resisting.
Raids where a suspect’s apartment is trashed while searching for narcotics happen all the time. A policy needs to be in place regarding what can reasonably be done during a search and, if nothing illegal is found, the authority that had jusidiction over the raid should be responsible for paying for any damage.
posted by: anon on December 23, 2011 5:29pm
If a few of our officers lived in New Haven, this type of thing wouldn’t happen.
Nearly 100% of officers now live in racist, declining slumburbs such as East Haven.
Same story with teachers. Only about 25% are people of color and only a handful live in the city even though the district is only 15% white. No wonder teaching quality at most city schools suffers and <10% of teachers at some schools say they would recommend that school to their friends.
A massive residency incentive program is needed to create cultural competency and respect for city residents.
posted by: Alex on December 23, 2011 5:44pm
This is so wrong on so many levels. This is police brutality in the extreme. A complaint should be lodged with the Attorney General as well as NHPD and State Police Internal Affairs. This should be investigated and steps taken to be sure this never happens again. This is disrespect of an individuals human rights.
posted by: Pat on December 23, 2011 5:50pm
What did the warrant say? Has anyone seen it? It has to state specifically what they are looking for and specifically where they expect to find it. Does the warrant state they were going to look in a box of rice? They trashed his entire apartment. And they will never answer for it. They never do, which is why they can do whatever they want. “To serve and protect”. Please.
posted by: Brian on December 23, 2011 5:55pm
I agree completely with “awful”, Mike, “seen it all” and former PD. Furthermore, I have to say that I feel embarrassed to be such an adamant supporter of the police when I look at Tomas Torres’ face and apartment. Looking at his face, I am appalled that the same police I support would do this to an innocent man. And laugh at him. This needs to be looked at and I don’t mean some cursory glance. This can’t possibly be the role that is intended for our law enforcement. If this kind of a case goes unexamined, we are all in trouble.
posted by: Jonathan on December 23, 2011 10:10pm
A judge had to provide authorization for any search warrant. How about a little follow-up on which judge authorized those cops to behave the way they did? Send the URL of this article to him or her. Perhaps she or he may act to try to include strictures that would curb behaviour such as this in the future.
posted by: George Cameron on December 24, 2011 1:15am
Holy ...I’m sorry for Mr. Torres and I hope the little, stocky state cop gets thrown off the force. Please find out about the intel for the warrant for this raid, as it reads to me like a setup. I hope the judge who signed the warrant is good and mad. Most dramatic photos I’ve seen in a story that I can recall….
posted by: Don't Judge on December 24, 2011 1:40am
This incident is not a surprised.. Just goes to prove discrimination in New Haven by cops. As a NH resident people here are well aware of the treatment they receive by the authorities. Oh if you don’t speak english coherently. That’s sure a justifiable reason to treat you inhumane.
posted by: Insider98 on December 24, 2011 8:06am
as with any incident,..there is always 3 sides to every story,....side a,..side b,..and side c,..the truth,..a few picture may tell a story,..but they do not tell the whole story,..nor are all the COMPLETE facts regarding the incident in this story,.....so as always,..as usual,...EVERYONE is quick to blame the cops,...lets wait and see what the follow up is,...just like the guy in east haven who lied about his complaint,...the story failed to mentioned that he tried to avoid a legal sobriety check point and subsequently ran and fought with the police,..!!!!
OK, so on one hand, we have an older gentlemen who was beaten senseless, and a number of other individuals who allege police brutality.
On the other hand, we have an allegation that 1 student had 1 grade modified.
Which of these two requires “emergency” meetings by the Mayor?
posted by: Curious on December 24, 2011 10:09am
Anon, your hyperbole are out of control.
Do you think that living in the suburbs makes you a racist? Do you think there are no racists living in New Haven? Do you think that hiring from New Haven would mean no racists on the police force? Do you think that moving racists from the suburbs into New Haven would make them suddenly not racist anymore.
It’s pretty clear from your statements that you have no clue about how racism works. [...]
posted by: Innocent Until... on December 24, 2011 10:24am
Cops who normally conduct high risk felony drug and gun warrants need to be ready for anything when they go through a door in the early morning hours. I’m not saying this is justified. BUT, when one enters a jigh risk unknown house and someone is trying to jump out if a window this person would be IMMEDIATELY thrown to the floor, maybe cuffed, or a cop would stay on him, with gun ready while the other cops quickly but methodically storm through the house to clear it for other threats. ONCE the house is clear EVERYTHING should de-escalate.
I know nothing of this incident, and I’m not taking sides BUT if the guy was trying to hop out a window, which he admits, is it possible he was being disruptive while the house was still HOT or uncleared?
One goes into these houses expecting numerous people hiding in closets, under beds, jumping out windows, guns, drugs, and pit bulls trained to ataack
posted by: observor1 on December 24, 2011 11:21am
To Streever We all know that the serious issue of political retaliation is far more important to John boy than the well being of our citizens.I guess we will see the governors response,if at all.A beating,hospitalization and a trashed apartment without an arrest,and the wrong place to boot would seem to warrant an IA investigation at the state level.Thankfully for Torres the NHPD interpretor did his job to help protect him and get him medical help !!
posted by: Just the facts on December 24, 2011 11:23am
@ jonathan Hopkins
“state police raid.” It appears, according to the article, that the Spanish speaking new haven officer offered assistance in translation and arranging medical attention for the man.
There is racism everywhere, not just the suburbs. New haven is not the exception.
posted by: Lonerider on December 24, 2011 11:58am
I would like to ask the public this seeing that there are so many people judging the police. ” Dear MR./Ms citizen have you EVER stormed through the door in a drug raid not knowing who is in the residence or if there is weapons and if you will go home to your family that night. Also have you ever executed a search warrant on a home to find a drug dealing gang banger sitting on a loaded gun in the 4th ranked most dangerous city in the country for violent crimes. Please keep an open mind and don’t JUDGE you were NOT their.
posted by: SO YOU KNOW on December 24, 2011 12:45pm
Drugs are hidden in boxes or containers with rice this is usually done with heroin to keep it dry. They are also hidden in vacuum cleaners, heating grates, under floorboards, in stuffed animals this can go on and on. The police are not looking for a large item that could not be found in the above places. So a search warrant allows them to look anywhere that these small items of narcotics might be located.
posted by: Morris Cove Mom on December 24, 2011 3:37pm
Between the facts that Mr. Torres is disabled and doesn’t speak English, he couldn’t have known it was police with a warrant even IF they had announced themselves. And I think that’s a big IF.
How hard would it have been to overtake and contain this disabled man? Why a booted foot on his face? Why a broken arm? I’m pretty sure you could have flashed a badge and he would have cowered in fear.
I’m not saying everyone who alleges police brutality is telling the truth. But as someone who once had a ‘bad cop’ as a relative, I can tell you that the laughing and enjoyment of the violence is not uncommon.
And it is problems like this that make good people who abide by and respect authority change into those who fear and run from it.
Now the big questions are: What is DeStefano and the newest Chief of Police going to do about it? and Who is going to help Mr. Torres clean and fix his apartment, and pay his hospital bills?
posted by: Alex on December 25, 2011 5:00am
This is a blatant violation of his Civil Rights, so it’s a Federal crime as well as a Human Rights violation. Civil Rights protect you from violence - look it up.
When this happens in other countries our govt condemns it. So they had better speak up now!
The Feds, state and NHPD all need to investigate this as well as the ACLU!!! It is as bad or worse than what was happening in East Haven.
posted by: Mike on December 25, 2011 12:07pm
These comment sections get out of control. Who said this guys place was any cleaner before the cops got there? Who said this guy didn’t resist physically? This article is way too one sided which probably has to do with the cops not talking to the press. Sure, this guy shouldn’t be so messed up but it seems many of you are playing judge and jury when we only have 1/2 the info at hand.
Maybe the cops were wrong for going into his place and maybe Torres was wrong for resisting so the cops just let it go rather than charging him. Remember- maybe maybe maybe
posted by: Brian on December 25, 2011 12:49pm
To Mike posting at 11:07, 12-25, Exactly. This looks really bad. I stand by my original comment(s). Maybe, maybe, maybe. So, to allay all of the maybe’s and naysaying, how about an official look into what seems like maybe this poor guy has gotten beaten pretty bad and had his humble abode trashed and didn’t get arrested. Maybe there’s some ‘splainin’ that needs to be done.
posted by: tired of this nonsense on December 25, 2011 1:10pm
I am still of the opinion that if there were 7-9 officers in on this raid, there is no way this man should have come out looking like he does.. resist or no resist. And yes. the police on ALL forces need to have training on how to deal with people with mental illness and be more aware of what these people need in terms of crying out for help. NOONE deserves to be laughed at especially someone that cannot control what is going on inside of their brain.
@ tired of this nonsense In Britain, they have to take a 1 year course in psychology to become officers. Not a bad way to do it.
The NHPD has a ridiculous number of hours of shooting training, which when you think about how often the average officer actually shoots their gun (and you look at how many VOLUNTARY hours they log shooting—remember, these are people who like shooting guns) just seems insane.
Why don’t they teach them about the roots of poverty, psychology, and how to deal with people with mental illness? Maybe teach them basic spanish?
posted by: bumphus on December 26, 2011 9:26am
Too bad the ... didn’t find a joint in the apartment, then it would have all been justified. Usually they’re smart enough to bring their own, just in case…
posted by: EVELYN on December 26, 2011 10:55am
@Steever: That is one of the best ideas Ive seen here yet. I just recently took part in a training for my job called ‘hearing voices’. An AMAZING training about what it;s like to have to try to function in a world where you hear negative voices in your head on a constant basis. It was hard but so very educational. I believe our officers should be mandated to take that training as well so that maybe when faced with such a situation, they may have a little more consideration for the insdividual.
posted by: awful on December 26, 2011 11:26am
Pretty quick resort to “blame the victim” here— 1) questioning his housekeeping; 2) shifting the comments to general discussion of mental illness. Get a grip on it people.
posted by: Former PD on December 26, 2011 1:40pm
Streever, your last comment went way overboard and included assumptions and stereotypes about police officers. Given the fact that we have the ability to take life, there’s no such thing as too much training on using our weapons proficiently, especially when some officers are learning about firearms for the first time when they enter the academy. Also, although some officers may like shooting guns, all of us do not, but it’s a necessary skill that’s part of the job and doing it well may save someone’s life, including our own. Finally, we do receive training on recognizing and dealing with people with mental illness.
posted by: Come On People on December 26, 2011 2:10pm
1) If you wanna know why the small quaint city of New Haven is the 4th most dangerous city in America read the comments above and below.
For all the people who said there has to has to be charges, ummm have you ever heard of an Arrest Warrant, maybe there are charges coming maybe this VICTIM is a pawn in a larger drug dealers business, maybe the police were rightly more concerned about the VICTIMS health and welfare rather than making sure the VICTIM was arrested to satisfy all the bloggers on the Independent.
2)Last I checked cops are getting arrested ALL the time, there is pending Federal charges at EHPD, do you think any cop anywhere in southern CT wants to have his/her name attached to police brutality especial now.
3) Have you ever been in any of the apartments at 280 Winthrop Ave, yeah not the cleanest of places , most of US wouldn’t take an apartment there for free
4) I am pretty sure that if someone like the independent , did some research and looked at how many people are arrested in New Haven each and every year and then looked at how many people made excessive force complaints either through IA, lawsuit, or complaints to the media or other organizations , you would see it is a very very small number.
5) Now WE need outlets like the Independent to bring these stories because not everyone and everything is above board and there needs to be a check and balances system which media outlets like the Independent provide, however I think we do a great dis-service to ourselves and this city by always always always second guessing the cities police force which by FAR does a great job and tries to consistently do the right thing. They may fail from time to time but they try.
posted by: DMV on December 26, 2011 2:16pm
I just want to put it out there that we shouldn’t use the fact that he didn’t get charged with anything as a reason why the beating was not justified.
I don’t think we want to create a situation where police just charge people with anything in order to justify police illegal actions. We should be looking at what happen.
You watch a harmless young woman beaten by cops for no reason at all but a bit of fun and tell me I’m making a poor statement. It was disgusting.
posted by: mike on December 26, 2011 10:37pm
Streever- ... This article ONLY had ONE mans story so I cant pretend to understand what exactly happened here ... If I get anything from this story it is that the guy did some bad stuff when they showed up, then the cops did something bad as well so they decided to call it even and move on. Is that wrong?
posted by: a_random_guy on December 27, 2011 11:23am
“...have you EVER stormed through the door in a drug raid not knowing who is in the residence or if there is weapons…”
Why not knock and wait like civilized people? There is absolutely no reason to cave in someone’s door, unless you have an emergency. Possible drugs are not an emergency.
There is also absolutely no need to trash the guy’s apartment or cause him any bodily harm. Having screwed up, the police ought to immediately pay for the cleaning, repairs and medical bills.
What are these guys - playground bullies with badges?
posted by: Brian on December 27, 2011 1:08pm
Hey Mike, I was with you up until the part about the cops decided to call it even and move on. This guy gets the s… kicked out of him and the thing he did to the cops that was equally offensive was? You’ve got to be kidding. Let’s wait to see if anything more comes out on this, but Mr. Torres got the short end of that transaction. Any other interpretation is ludicrous. Let’s try to be fair, please.
posted by: loc on December 27, 2011 2:15pm
Cops are the biggest, most dangerous street gang in America.
posted by: Rynosaur on December 27, 2011 4:05pm
Not a regular course of business? Really? Cops have become the ...s. I loathe police, which is sad, because there may still be a few good ones left. ...
posted by: Whitemellon on December 27, 2011 5:35pm
At least they didn’t disappear him.
posted by: Red on December 27, 2011 8:14pm
The proof he was guilty and jumping out the window is all the drugs they found. oh, wait….
posted by: disappointed on December 27, 2011 8:17pm
The police are no longer our friends.
posted by: Robert A. Vine, Sr. on December 27, 2011 8:44pm
Even if he had drugs they don’t need to treat folks like that. However, he didn’t have any contraband so they beat the crap out of him, vandalize his dwelling and don’t even say sorry and we will pay to have your place cleaned-up?? Anymore cops ... can bully you because you can’t do s… about it because the judges always take their side. Police protection my ass!
posted by: Thomas Paine on December 27, 2011 9:14pm
The Second Amendment of the US constitution is specifically designed to prevent this sort of thing. Get to it, or stop calling yourselves American.
posted by: AquaRegia on December 27, 2011 10:07pm
Some people seem to wonder why the person whose place is going to be searched doesn’t just let the police in. The way this is done is that the cops yell “Police”, reputedly wait 15 seconds, then break down the door. SCOTUS has ruled this sufficient time.
They don’t fix the door even if nothing is found. In most cases it is impossible to recover any damages that occur. The cops just smash up everything in site.
posted by: Eric on December 28, 2011 12:17am
Enough with this Paul Vance guy, I mean come on, it’s like hes an actor or something by now. Does he expect people to believe a hollow lie? I think Ive had enough of listening to an old man in a hat continuously.
posted by: Trig on December 28, 2011 12:32am
Like 4 people commented on how he said he “jumped out the window.” Can any of you read? It says the COP said he tried to jump out the window. All the victim said was that he LOOKED out the window and saw cop cars, at which point they kicked down his door and beat him up…
posted by: jess on December 28, 2011 1:05am
Seriously, there are good police out there, but these guys give them a bad name. Honestly, all drug busts should be videotaped…hire a friggin armed camera man to video EVERYTHING. That way there is no he said/she said.
posted by: John Doe on December 28, 2011 2:05am
But he looks guilty. Signed, Military Industrial Security Complex
posted by: Harold Hughes on December 28, 2011 2:18am
I’m afraid to say anything in fear of being beat up like that man. im 73 and probably would not servive a taser. plus im hard of hearing.ive herd cops tasering deff people because they did not stop when told to do so. im also a bleader. there has ben some drug dealing in my neighborhood in the past. I live in fear of the police breaking down my door and killing me for no reason, I have had no problems with the druggiesn or dealers.
posted by: Actually Reading in NHVN on December 28, 2011 2:28am
The first line states it was the STATE POLICE who was responsible for this….it was a New Haven cop who later arrived translated for him and took him to the ambulance…. When will the peanut gallery actually read the article. Ugh!
posted by: steve on December 28, 2011 3:37am
Ron Paul 2012 and there will be an end to this
posted by: SueThePricks on December 28, 2011 10:29am
Shouldn’t be hard to find an attorney to handle this. A reasonable award will be measured in the millions of dollars… New Haven needs to cleanse itself of costly liabilities like it’s current police force or it will be bankrupt soon.
posted by: George Cameron on December 28, 2011 1:37pm
These posted comments have gone far afield since I first commented on Dec. 24 at 12:15 AM. There’s certainly a police brutality issue. But there’s an equally important police intelligence issue - i.e., whose intel provided the basis for the warrant and what specifically was that intel. Which officer applied to the court for the warrant? Who makes up this state-local police unit and what is its record of arrests/convictions? What’s the status of the internal investigation? Can the New haven Independent get a copy of the warrant? This is a case that needs follow-up investigation and reporting. Will the Independent do that, and how can we help?
posted by: Temper Bay on December 28, 2011 4:23pm
A recent national report states that police deaths are up across the nation. As our rise to a Police-State continues, with it’s abuses sanctioned and protected by our courts and lawmakers, I suspect the numbers will only increase; the old saying ‘You Reap What You Sow’ has merit. The Power and Authority exercised by the Law Enforcement community is only -granted- by ‘the people’ and is not absolute. I carried a badge for 30 years with pride and honor, and our highest priority was to ‘serve the people’, to gain and keep their respect and confidence - but I am neither proud or confident of what I see today.
posted by: Lynda Faye Wilson on December 29, 2011 8:06am
Mr. Torre’s sister is absolutely right. People do not disrupt where animal dwell with expectation of them return to normalcy. Obvious Protocol was not followed, which is a practice of law enforcement for many years. We talk about stop the violence in the streets constantly. What about the violence in our homes by the “community paid protectors”? There was no mention of a warrant being presented to “Torre” at any point in this fiasco, nor a hint of an apology, which would not help in altering the results of the HUMAN INDUCED STORM. ESPECIALLY AFTER NOT FINDING ANYTHING CONTRARY TO THEIR AIR TIGHT CASE EXPECTATION. DAMAGES, OH MY GOD. THERE IS NO SUCH ANIMAL AMONGST DEPARTMENTS OR SQUADES. WHILE THE RETRAININGS ARE TAKING PLACE AROUND VIOLENCE IN THE CITY, A GOOD LOOK NEEDS TO TAKE PLACE ON THIS SERIOUS ISSUE COMMITTED BY PERPETRATORS OF LAW ENFORCEMENT. NEVER GIVING REGUARD TO “RISK OF INJURY TO MINORS” WHICH IS SERIOUSLY PUNISHED BY LAW FOR CITIZENS, YET EXCLUDES LAW OFFICERS OF SUCH ACTIONS IN MANY, MANY, MANY INCIDENTES. CRIME IS CRIME OR SHOULD BE REGUARDED AS SUCH. A “WHAT IF” THAT NEEDS TO TAKE A GOOD LOOK-SEE AS BETTER TACTIC EXERCISE. IT’S SERIOUS AND TRAUMATIZING WHETHER OR NOT JUSTIFICATION IS MADE FOR “THE HUMAN STORM.”
I have been hearing a lot of stuff tha sounds similiar to this. Officers barging in people’s home with some made up excuse, either “loud noise” “someone being abused” or “dugs” But it seems that they’ve been targeting people of color. it happend to me, it happened to a man I work with? wtf is going on here!
posted by: vfeinstein on January 5, 2012 12:08pm
Totally and utterly disgusting. Everyday we hear more and more instances such as this, yet hear nothing in terms of what PD’s nationwide will do to rectify blatant police brutality. I fear this is just another step towards the militarization of police; another step towards a police state.
I hope Mr. Torres recovers from his injuries, gets a great attorney and sues the pants off these brutes with badges and guns.