4th Amendment Tested | Family Sues FBI Over Botched Raid

Bellevue family sues FBI over ‘terrifying’ raid


Brian Bowling|PittsburghTribuneReview

"When I hit that bend and turned," he said, pointing toward the staircase that lands near his front door, "there was a laser sight on my head."

The lasting impact of the raid on Gary Adams’ home became clear in a comment from his 3-year-old granddaughter during a recent trip to the pharmacy.

“She said, ‘Granddad. Police. Hide,’ ” Adams, 57, of Bellevue recalled Wednesday while discussing the federal lawsuit he filed against the officers who burst into his home March 3.

Led by FBI Special Agent Karen Springmeyer, about a dozen officers used a battering ram to enter Adams’ rented Orchard Street home in a search for Sondra Hunter, then 35. But Hunter hadn’t lived at that address for almost two years, while Adams and his family had been living there for more than a year, according to the lawsuit filed by Adams and 10 other family members.

The family crowded into a Downtown conference room with their lawyer, Timothy O’Brien, to discuss the case.

An FBI spokeswoman referred all calls to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, where a spokeswoman declined to comment.

The lawsuit says that officers knew, or should have known, that Hunter no longer lived there. By executing an arrest warrant at a residence that wasn’t Hunter’s, they violated the family’s Fourth Amendment right against unreasonable search and seizure, and their Fifth Amendment right to due process, the lawsuit says.

Read More Here