New York, NY – Brooklyn resident Raven Garcia is filing a lawsuit against the NYPD after the police entered her house without a warrant, shot her dog and then ransacked her home in an attempt to find evidence to justify their intrusion. Police were called to Garcia’s house over an unpaid cab fee, but they had no warrant or justification to enter her home without permission.
Garcia had been out drinking with her friends on that night, and when realizing that she was too drunk to drive home, she did the responsible thing and took a cab. Unfortunately, Garcia forgot to pay the cab driver when they arrived at her house, likely due to her intoxication. It is true that Garcia was in the wrong for stiffing the cab driver, but this hardly justifies a warrantless search and the shooting of an animal, this is a very simple matter that could have been resolved very quickly and easily if the police were not so quick to escalation and aggression.
However, it is important to point out that all charges regarding the unpaid cab fare have since been dropped — making the dog shooting and subsequent raid — entirely unjust.
According to witnesses, police arrived at Garcia’s apartment with large numbers in an extreme show of force. They let themselves into the home and carelessly allowed the dog to walk out of the house. Witness testimony has stated that the dog, named Macho, was calm and friendly while outside and was shot by one of the officers for no reason. When neighbors asked about the condition of the dog, the officers on the scene told the neighbors to call for help, because they hadn’t done so.
Meanwhile, a gang of cops began ransacking the house in an attempt to find drugs which would justify their raid and the shooting of the dog. They even went on to search a neighbors apartment that was not even owned by Garcia. After a long search, police found absolutely nothing, but they still arrested Garcia.
According to the lawsuit, “NYPD officers did unlawfully imprison Plaintiff as they ransacked her apartment and shot her companion animal with an unnecessary and gratuitous display of physical force, as they cordoned off the area and prevented witnesses from reporting the unjust nature of the shooting, despite witnesses’ attempts to do so.”
The lawsuit also stated that the officer who shot Macho, Officer Abiola Enrico, was taunting Garcia about her weight, and was so aggressive with her that she was restrained by other officers at one point.
Garcia was then taken jail, where she was deprived of food and water and shackled to a bench in a cold and empty room. The lawsuit states that the temperatures in the room were “frigid.”
One of Garcia’s friends, whom she had been out drinking with that night, had even attempted to pay the cab fee and was told that it was too late, even when she showed up to the police department with the cab driver, who would have been willing to accept the late payment.
Garcia has since retained an attorney and has filed a federal lawsuit against the department for the unlawful search and the shooting of her beloved dog.
“This is a perfect example of the type of incident that has eroded the public’s faith in law enforcement,” said Matthew Albert, Garcia’s attorney. “The most benign of phone calls resulted in a dog being shot, and an entire platoon trying to cover up the brutal crime of a fellow Officer and then torturing an New York University Graduate student and artist. The NYPD, and too many law enforcement officials in general, have a unique ability to escalate events so that everything ends in bloodshed. It’s disgraceful.”