Another SWAT team abuse. Are we fed up yet?

Because technically this isn’t a Drug War thing. Though this sort of thing certainly was enabled by the Drug War.

Sequence of events:

  1. Kid gets badly bruised by playing tag with a moving car.

  2. Father - trained army medic - looks over the damage, decides it’s not too bad, takes kid inside to lie down.

  3. Nanny-stater neighbor decides paramedics must be called instead, and does so.

  4. Paramedics arrive. Father informs them they’re not needed. Paramedic forces his way into house, glimpses kid, decides based on that glimpse the full force of the state is required.

  5. SWAT team arrives, busts down door, points guns in everyone’s faces, handcuffs mother, kidnaps kid, takes kid to hospital.

  6. Doctor at hospital examines kid, tells him to take some Tylenol and lie down, he’ll be fine.

You’re not competent to take care of your own kids. Only the state is. And they’re not yours anyway, they’re the state’s.

“I was given a court order, and I really don’t feel I have any choice but to comply with that court order.”

Damn straight. And if he’d been given a court order to round up the blacks and jews and shoot 'em in the head, he’d have done that too, because orders are meant to be followed.

Yeah, what the hell is the state doing trying to take care of kids!? A parent would never do anything against the interest of their child.

Ahh, another OUTRAGE!!! posted on QT3.

Conveniently omitting about half the facts. Coincidentally, those facts make the issue far less inflammatory than the OP makes it out to be.

The boy had injured his face and head Thursday during some horseplay after grabbing onto the door handle of a moving car.
Perhaps there might be a reason to be a bit concerned about the boy’s health, or the family situation that allows this kind of activity.

“We have had encounters with him indicating that he’s potentially violent, certainly agitating, confrontational,” he said.

He said two Garfield County deputies arrived Friday before the AHRT and explained the warrant and that they would need to take the 11-year-old boy in for medical evaluation.

“He was rather vulgar in his response,” Vallario said Tuesday. “I was given a court order, and I really don’t feel I have any choice but to comply with that court order.”

Perhaps the father’s actions caused things to escalate a bit…

Vallario said Shiflett was arrested in 2005 on suspicion of felony menacing after chasing someone down the street with an ax.
Perhaps the police wanted to play it safe with someone who was not the most mild-mannered neighborhood resident.

Look, I don’t know all the facts here. It’s possible the police overreacted. But it’s also possible that their actions were reasonable responses to a difficult domestic situation. I know, I know, whenever the police intervene strongly in anything short of a multiple homicide, QT3 must be OUTRAGED!!! Maybe we should reserve such outrage for cases where the facts are more clear cut and truly indicate a reason to be outraged.

So true… And HERE is the missing info:

The sheriff said the decision to use SWAT team force was justified because the father was a “self-proclaimed constitutionalist” and had made threats and “comments” over the years.

However, the sheriff declined to provide a single instance of the father’s illegal behavior. “I can’t tell you specifically,” he said.

“He was refusing to provide medical care,” the sheriff said.

However, the sheriff said if his own children were involved in an at-home accident, he would want to be the one to make decisions on their healthcare, as did Shiflett.

“I guess if that was one of my children, I would make that decision,” the sheriff said.

But he said Shiflett was “rude and confrontational” when the paramedics arrived and entered his home without his permission.

How dare he… uh… believe in the constitution… and be rude to paramedics forcing their way in… and… uh… wait, what are you saying now?

Anti-Bunny, I think 99%+ of the time, the parents’ should be the ones making decisions in cases like this.

But there are instances where the parents should NOT be trusted. That’s where the state can (and sometimes should) step in to help the children.

I don’t know, for sure, if this case was one of those instances. But the story provides enough detail to at least suggest that this father was perhaps more than a little unconventional, and that the officials involved may have acted prudently, even if the end result was that the child did not need significant medical intervention.

As usual, we can add perspective by considering another scenario that might fit with the (limited) facts we have. Note, I am not saying that the following is what DID occur (the story does not fill in all the facts, and some facts seem to be in dispute). Rather, the following scenario MIGHT have occurred:

An 11 year old boy receives a head injury while engaged in dangerous activity, that his father who was apparently in the vicinity perhaps should have prevented in the first place. While the father only applies minimal treatment to the injury, a neighbor is concerned enough (perhaps based on past observation of the family), to notify the authorities, even creating a bit of risk for the neighbor himself/herself (the father has gotten into extended confrontations with previous people that led to the father chasing them with an axe.) The authorities are perhaps familiar with this family already. Perhaps there have been previous signs of sub-optimal treatment for the kids. They get a search order, because they suspect the father will shoe them off otherwise, and dispatch deputies to talk to the father to handle the matter calmly. The father curses at them and is uncooperative. The authorities escalate things, bringing in a SWAT team, because the authorities want to minimize the chance that less-prepared officers get injured, or that members of the family get injured. The show of overwhelming force (the SWAT team), enables the authorities to enforce the search warrant peacefully. Upon finally getting a chance to be in contact with the boy, authorities send him to be examined by a physician, who discovers, thankfully, that the injuries are not in fact all that severe.

Read this story again with end result being that the kid needed emergency room care. If it still sounds like an out of control state, you need to lay off the crazy pills.

I’ve read the article and I can’t find where it says that; the most on the kid’s result was “The boy was examined and returned hours later with the recommendation to ice his bruises and take Tylenol.”

I think what he’s trying to say is ‘think of the children!!! He COULD have been really injured!!!’ Which sounds to me like ‘they COULD have had WMDs all along!!!’

Yes, because the two situations are pretty much identical, right?

In fact, in any situation in which the government exercises caution, and then later realizes that the thing they were cautious about did not turn out as bad as it might have, we should all laugh and point and shout “No WMDs, no WMDs!!!”

Or, perhaps, each situation is different, and you have to know the specific facts to render a judgment. Rollory presented only a few inflammatory facts and not the important ones that show why the authorities might have been justifiably concerned.

The key to this whole thing is whether Shiflett was properly informed that there was a valid warrant to enter and examine the child. There clearly was such a warrant, but it’s not clear whether Shiflett was given the chance to comply with it after it was issued. He claims he was not, and the article doesn’t say whether the Government claims that he was.

From the article:

He said two Garfield County deputies arrived Friday before the AHRT and explained the warrant and that they would need to take the 11-year-old boy in for medical evaluation.

It sounds like the government did try to explain things to him.

It’s not entirely clear whether the visit described above was to notify him that SWAT would be arriving, or if it was an initial attempt to handle things in a lower key manner, and when it was unsuccessful, the SWAT team was brought in as a result. It’s also possible, among other things, that the situation didn’t go down as described in that quote (or that I’m misinterpreting things).

I hope the neighbor gets the bill for all of these services rendered.

Wow… I would hope that they were commended for being concerned about someone else’s child’s welfare. They saw what had happened, and thought the child needed more medical treatment than was administered. They were concerned, and took the appropriate steps to be sure that said child was properly examined. I find it admirable that the neighbor saw what they obviously felt was neglect and called.

IMHO, it’s when people turn their heads and say “it’s none of my business” that those people go from being innocent of any knowledge of abuse to being an enabler of the abuse.

That’s why I live far away from nosy neighbors.

I love the sarcasm.

I agree they went too far in this instance. But when I see shit like this, where a woman murders her four children and then lives with their corpses for several months, I wonder “where the hell was the DC government?” (or even a nosy neighbor, for God’s sake).

So, for those in favor of this, what about parents who deny medical care for their children on religious bounds? Can the state bust in and take their children by force for that?

(Note: I think those people are crazy and kids dying because their parents can’t grok the concept of science and reason is heartbreaking. But as far as I know, it’s legal. Correct me if I’m wrong.)

A lot of stupid shit is done in the name of religion.

They can over here and do (no need for SWAT, though) and I think it’s the way to go.

Our laws are that you can kill your self by refusing treatment for religious reason if you’re above 18 years old, but if you try to refuse it for your kids, the state takes them away - at least until the treatment is finished.

See part of me is torn on the issue here. On the one hand perhaps it is better to make sure that a potentially injured child is ok. On the other sending in SWAT to do a Social Worker’s job does seem a little extreme when there doesn’t appear to have been any overt threat along the lines of “come near my house and we start a shootin’”.

I’m totally at ease with forcibly removing kids from people deliberately withholding medical treatment because of Jebus but my namby-pamby wishy washy liberal opinion is that it should be Social Services doing it, not SWAT.

I totally agree and perhaps my parenthesis didn’t express that well enough.