NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Interim Metro Nashville Police Chief John Drake says three officers were decommissioned after police raided the wrong Edgehill apartment.
The department announced an investigation into the incident during a press conference Wednesday afternoon.
Body camera footage shows armed officers ramming the door of an Edgehill family's apartment that had children inside at 6:05 a.m. In the video, you can hear the mother responding to police, trying to understand the situation before officers force the door open.
Drake said the undercover officers were executing an evidentiary search warrant connected to vehicle burglaries. Drake added that the information that the person involved lived in that home was "stale." The department got the address from a Metropolitan Development and Housing Agency database. However, the database had not been updated since November 2018, and the family had been living in the apartment for four months.
The officers tried to use keys to the apartment, but they didn't work because the locks had been changed.
"I’m greatly disturbed by the video you just viewed. In all candor, this shouldn’t have happened. This mother and her children should not have been subjected to this type of behavior by our police department," Drake said.
Jeff Brown, Harrison Dooley and Michael Richardson were decommissioned while the officer of professional accountability conducts an investigation to find out why the officers used force considering the warrant did not involve a violent criminal.
"The problem we have is the urgency. What was the urgency to get inside once you knocked? Why couldn't we have given them more time to respond at 6:05 a.m.? A no-knock is exactly what it says there's no knock you breach the door you go in and you catch someone totally unexpected. They did knock. They did to a degree make an announcement but it was not acceptable at all," explained Drake.
He explained that the department regrets what happened and will do what they can to help the family.
“From the bottom of my heart and the bottom of the heart of this police department, this is not what we stand for. We want to take care of this family. We want to do whatever we can to help them moving forward.”
To keep a similar incident from happening again, Drake said the department is implementing the following changes:
- Immediate suspension of all search warrants unless they’re approved by a deputy chief - a move that’s never been done before.
- Training for all crime suppression units to review the issuing of search warrants, surveillance tactics, etc.
*Editor's Note: A photo of Sgt. Brown was not released due to his undercover work.