Henderson, NV Cops Break Into Home

Submitter Ernie Menard writes, “I just read on Marc Randazza’s blog that Henderson cops wanted to use a person’s house as a location from which to surveil an adjacent property. The homeowner refused entry so the police forcibly entered and arrested the homeowner.”

Posted July 4, 2013

A federal lawsuit filed against the Henderson, NV police department raises Third Amendment issues! How exciting!

In the case, Anthony Mitchell and his family sued the City of Henderson and its Police Chief Jutta Chambers, Officers Garret Poiner, Ronald Feola, Ramona Walls, Angela Walker, and Christopher Worley, and City of North Las Vegas and its Police Chief Joseph Chronister, in Federal Court. The allegations stem from a domestic violence investigation, in which Mitchell alleges the Henderson police wanted him to let them use his house to gain a “tactical advantage” over the subject of their investigation.

At 10:45 a.m., Defendant OFFICER CHRISTOPHER WORLEY (HPD) contacted Plaintiff ANTHONY MITCHELL via his telephone. WORLEY told Plaintiff that police needed to occupy his home in order to gain a “tactical advantage” against the occupant of the neighboring house. ANTHONY MITCHELL told the officer that he did not want to become involved and that he did not want police to enter his residence. Although WORLEY continued to insist that Plaintiff should leave his residence, Plaintiff clearly explained that he did not intend to leave his home or to allow police to occupy his home. WORLEY then ended the phone call. (Complaint at Para 18)

Then, it gets really hinkey.

“Defendant Officer David Cawthorn outlined the defendants’ plan in his official report: ‘It was determined to move to 367 Evening Side and attempt to contact Mitchell. If Mitchell answered the door he would be asked to leave. If he refused to leave he would be arrested for Obstructing a Police Officer. If Mitchell refused to answer the door, force entry would be made and Mitchell would be arrested.’” (Complaint at Para. 19)

So what happened next? Allegedly the cops came to the house, beat on the door, and when Mitchell did not open up, they bashed the door down with a battering ram. They aimed their guns at him, screamed at him, shot him with “pepperball” rounds, searched the house, moved his furniture, and set up a lookout point in the house, and restrained him.

Continue reading…



Kelly W. Patterson

a lifelong resident of Las Vegas, who’s been very active in local grassroots activism, as well as on a national level during his extensive travels. He’s also the founder/main contributor of Nevada CopBlock, Editor/contributor at CopBlock.org and designed the Official CopBlock Press Passes.
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  • Common Sense

    In regards to the “Quartering” lawsuit, I think there is more to the story.

    You can sue a ham sandwich so the fact a suit was filed means little. The statements in the suit, if correct, are on their face are unconstitutional and the city’s attorney should be getting a check ready with a non-disclosure agreement ASAP.

    I would very much like to see the affidavits and see the basis for the entry.

    It certainly wouldn’t be a 3rd Amendment violations, but could be a 4th and 14th. I would have to see the basis for the “take over” of the home. Had the neighbor taken a hostage? Had their been claims of a violent encounter? Was their some immediate need to evacuate?

    Even looking at the close proximity of homes in the subdivision, I don’t really see a need for a “tactical advantage” unless their was a hostage situation or some other immediate danger to the residents at Eveningside Ave. I just don’t see how the “emergency doctrine” could be applied to this case.

    Someone better have written a very compelling report.

  • t.

    Common: A wheel thought out response. I too would be interested in the “whole story”. But as is a typical lawyer tactic….when the case is weak, throw as much stuff at as you can and hope something sticks.

  • Real Sense

    I too don’t know if the 3rd arugement is going to fly, but yes, just based on what I have seen about this elsewhere, someone has a lot of explaining to do. It is not going to be pretty for the city or the police.

    I do agree its a 4th issue, maybe also a 6th, due process in taking his house, even for a short time.

    From what I understand the 3rd has been so rarely used, how will the courts take it. At the time it was written there where no police, so would the framers have thought that modern day police amount to the same thing as troops?

    I don’t fault the lawyer for tossing in every charge he can think of, the DAs do it all the time if they want screw with someone.

  • Common Sense

    This was apparently a ‘non-incident’ in 2011, so time will tell.

  • just an american

    sounds like armed trespassing and armed assault. A lot of right-wing websites are picking up this one.

  • Common Sense

    Not much, but its a start. Unless the barricaded subject had made some threats, they are still on shaky ground.


  • Don

    Hey folks. It’s time we started talking strategy here. We have the luxury of being able to observe police tactics. This means we have the opportunity to counter these tactics. For example: Say we have a huge demonstration like OWS. We see the Police snatch and grab tactics but have you ever noticed how some of the cops stray from the group and at times can be vulnerable. So we organize our tactics, when we see a officr stray from the group we swarm and ziptie him and take him behind the lines, then we have a bargaining chip. Another tactic is shielding. Bring zipties, bring home made pepper spray, non lethal tactics. Here is a clip from the G20 summit in Toronto, watch how vulnerable the Cops make themselves when they go to grab a protester. All it takes is a groups of people to act as a shield, as a snatch and as a decoy. Do you guys agree with me here?

  • Don
  • Don

    Another tactic is to all wear the same clothing, and paint your face. In Canada they said it’s now illegal to wear a mask at a protest, but they didn’t say anything about painting the face.

  • Common Sense

    I agree with Don Tell me how that plays out for you.

    Please record it with several angles.

  • YankeeFan

    Common Sense,

    I could see the need to evacuate if the fool was shooting off a gun. This happened to my parents when I first was divorced in 2000. The Sheriff’s office asked them to leave as their house directly across the street from a fool shooting off a 38 in his home. They asked residents in the 3 houses directly across to leave and after an hour the guy was in custody. This particular case,as we discussed on the other topic, is very interesting as if the complaint is true, the police do have some serious explaining to do. The charges against the family were dismissed with prejudice and that does mean something significant but we will see how this plays out. I found this brief definition:

    A court has inherent power to dismiss an action with prejudice if it is vexatious, brought in bad faith, or when there has been a failure to prosecute it within a reasonable time.

    Vexatious litigation is legal action which is brought, regardless of its merits, solely to harass or subdue an adversary. It may take the form of a primary frivolous lawsuit or may be the repetitive, burdensome, and unwarranted filing of meritless motions in a matter which is otherwise a meritorious cause of action. Filing vexatious litigation is considered an abuse of the judicial process and may result in sanctions against the offender.

  • Common Sense, Lord and Master of Zion

    I’d certainly like to hear the City Attorney’s reply to the suit.

    Perhaps someone will FOIA the police report and post it. I’m talking to you Buehler.

  • RadicalDude

    “Don says:
    July 6, 2013 at 12:54 pm

    Do you guys agree with me here?”

    I agree people should be talking counter-tactics, however every one of the ones you mention is a very bad idea. Unless you enjoy getting beaten up and tazed/pepper sprayed and long vacations in jail. You are just courting trouble if you actually try any of that stuff, and you will give other activists a bad name in the process.

  • RadicalDude

    I don’t think I’d call it vexatious litigation, or bad faith, but yeah, the charges are frivolous. Arrested for hanging out in his own house minding his own business. How does he know the guy on the phone is a cop? It could be the perp himself calling so he can take over the house for his own “tactical advantage”.

  • shawn

    “I could see the need to evacuate if the fool was shooting off a gun.”

    I saw this one over at FreeRepublic.com yesterday.
    The issue wasn’t an evacuation. The police wanted to use the home against the family’s will. That was what this was about.

  • Silvestri

    I did a little research on this when it first came out.
    The 3rd amendment was invoked because there was no professional police force. It probably will not stick but the reading about the charge was interesting:
    I am for defending the actions of law enforcement but unless this was a life-or-death situation there is no excuse. Strangely, this one bothers me more than most of the other articles. I’m guessing that it was the callousness of the officers involved.

  • Silvestri

    What I mean by callous is that normally there is some kind of situation that would call for arresting people. They used the obstruction charge before but this is different. They planned to arrest people innocent of any crime simply so they could use the property with or without permission. They didn’t care that the home owners would have an arrest record, confined if they couldn’t make bail or if the case was dropped.

  • YankeeFan



  • YankeeFan


    No they didn’t care. Yet the police on Policeone even wonder why the public is turning on them and becoming less and less helpful and cooperative.

  • shawn


    “No they didn’t care. Yet the police on Policeone even wonder why the public is turning on them and becoming less and less helpful and cooperative.”

    That is because cops are clueless about any world view but their own. They can’t conceive of the possibility that good honest people won’t simply support any action they take.

    There are a few who are starting to get it. As I’ve posted before, a cop here suggested t take of the badge and look around from our shoes. He pointed out that when people root for and listen to that Dorner nut, maybe cops have done that to themselves. Shooting the innocent people didn’t exactly help them.

  • Common Sense

    Nice word, I had to look it up.

    I had an earlier post but it never made it through the mod, ha ha, I laughed.

    Anyway, until the other side comes out this is still a “she said-she said”

  • Silvestri

    @Don: So you are just kidding around, right??

    I’ll give you the same advice that I recently gave someone else here: Take the high road. Don’t fight the police or do anything illegal. Make sure whatever actions you take are within the boundaries of the law. If any laws are broken, make sure it is the other side doing it.

    Seriously, before you get arrested for kidnapping or pepper spraying a law enforcement officer.

  • This wasn’t about evacuation. The police took over the home to gain a “tactical advantage.” Since the home in question was two doors down with no sight line to the suspects home I’m not sure what that advantage was. Also, after arresting the son, the police then allegedly lured his parents to the command post only to arrest them.

    Since all charges, including those against the DV suspect, were dismissed, its pretty clear that nothing illegal was going on, except of course for the home invasion perpetrate by police.

    While the 4th and 14th Amendment issues are clear, I believe this case will establish an important president in regards to the 3rd Amendment, that is “Are cops soldiers.” They dress like soldiers, train like soldiers, carry nearly identical weapons as soldiers, they are always waging some WAR and refer to those not in uniform as civilians. They all view the officers of the NYPD as peers, which was recently dubbed by the highest ranking elected official in the city as “The 7th Largest ARMY in the world.”

  • @Common Sense says:”This was apparently a ‘non-incident’ in 2011, so time will tell.”

    I’m sure it was. I have no doubt that forcing your way into an innocent man’s home, firing pepperballs at him and his dog, searching and trashing his residence, then inviting his parents over for a nice chat only to arrest them as well as the son is what the Henderson Police Department considers a “non-incident.’

    I hear when served copies of the lawsuit and reading what they were accused of doing, the cops weren’t certain which incident was in question.

    When told they were being accused of violating an entire family’s rights before arresting them all on false charges the officers all responded, “Can you be more specific? You’ve just described my typical Tuesday.”

  • RadicalDude

    I really don’t think they acted on “bad faith” per se, it seems more like they just didn’t know any better.

  • Chris Mallory

    “For a man’s house is his castle, et domus sua cuique est tutissimum refugium” The Institutes of the Laws of England, 1628

    “The poorest man may in his cottage bid defiance to all the forces of the crown. It may be frail – its roof may shake – the wind may blow through it – the storm may enter – the rain may enter – but the King of England cannot enter.” William Pitt, the first Earl of Chatham

    A damn shame that Englishmen in 1763 had more protection than Americans in 2013.

    Here is what they thought about the matter in 1800 in the United States:

    “Exalt the citizen. As the State is the unit of government he is the unit of the State. Teach him that his home is his castle, and his sovereignty rests beneath his hat.” Henry W. Grady

    All cops lie, all the time.

    Disarm cops for a safer America.

  • Chris Mallory

    ClarkCounty, I do agree that modern police forces are what the Founders meant when they talked about standing armies. But don’t believe what Bloomberg says. He has about 34,000 uniformed cops. That doesn’t even make the top 50 for active militaries. If you count every city employee, he still doesn’t even crack the top 20 in size.

    When you count total LEOs, the US comes in 3rd in the world at roughly 800,000. China and India both have more. Compared to world armies, the number of cops in the US would make the world’s sixth largest active duty army.

  • Chris, that is IF you could get them all to believe in a common cause. If the SHTF, how many of those do you think would Actually show up for work. For an answer to that, all you need to do is review the Katrina disaster. There was a VERY large outbreak of blue flu when the situation turned ugly. The police are all about beating their chests when the numbers are in their favor. Not so much when character is truly on the line.

  • Chris Mallory

    Oh, I agree, Alvin. The typical cop is a liar, a coward and a bully.

  • Common Sense

    Interesting topic….

    “Over 200 (out of 1600) NOPD officers were said to have deserted the city during the storm. These officers were given the opportunity to explain their actions before the deputy chief in a tribunal-like hearing, after which 85% of the officers who supposedly deserted were terminated. The ones who stayed during Katrina were awarded with a Hurricane Katrina lapel pin to be worn on the uniform. It is shaped like the star and crescent badge, with a hurricane emblem in the center of the star.”

    And just for comparison…

    “By Bill Nichols, USA TODAY
    WASHINGTON — At least 8,000 members of the all-volunteer U.S. military have deserted since the Iraq war began, Pentagon records show, although the overall desertion rate has plunged since the Sept. 11 attacks in 2001. Since fall 2003, 4,387 Army soldiers, 3,454 Navy sailors and 82 Air Force personnel have deserted. The Marine Corps does not track the number of desertions each year but listed 1,455 Marines in desertion status last September, the end of fiscal 2005, says Capt. Jay Delarosa, a Marine Corps spokesman

  • Chris Mallory

    Nice try at misdirection common.

    For the numbers to be comparable 125,000 service members would have had to have deserted.

    I do like how the cops in NOLA who stayed and did the job they are paid to do, that is all they did, got special pieces of costume jewelry to wear like they were heroes or something.

    All cops lie, all the time.

    Disarm cops for a safer America.

  • Common Sense

    I know its an older article, but interesting none-the-less.

    “8,000 desert during Iraq war
    By Bill Nichols, USA TODAY
    WASHINGTON — At least 8,000 members of the all-volunteer U.S. military have deserted since the Iraq war began, Pentagon records show, although the overall desertion rate has plunged since the Sept. 11 attacks in 2001.
    Since fall 2003, 4,387 Army soldiers, 3,454 Navy sailors and 82 Air Force personnel have deserted. The Marine Corps does not track the number of desertions each year but listed 1,455 Marines in desertion status last September, the end of fiscal 2005, says Capt. Jay Delarosa, a Marine Corps spokesman

    Desertion records are kept by fiscal year, so there are no figures from the beginning of the war in March 2003 until that fall.

    Some lawyers who represent deserters say the war in Iraq is driving more soldiers to question their service and that the Pentagon is cracking down on deserters.

    “The last thing they want is for people to think … that this is like Vietnam,” says Tod Ensign, head of Citizen Soldier, an anti-war group that offers legal aid to deserters. (Related story: Marines hunt Vietnam-era

    Desertion numbers have dropped since 9/11. The Army, Navy and Air Force reported 7,978 desertions in 2001, compared with 3,456 in 2005. The Marine Corps showed 1,603 Marines in desertion status in 2001. That had declined by 148 in 2005.

    The desertion rate was much higher during the Vietnam era. The Army saw a high of 33,094 deserters in 1971 — 3.4% of the Army force. But there was a draft and the active-duty force was 2.7 million.

    Desertions in 2005 represent 0.24% of the 1.4 million U.S. forces.

    Opposition to the war prompts a small fraction of desertions, says Army spokeswoman Maj. Elizabeth Robbins. “People always desert, and most do it because they don’t adapt well to the military,” she says. The vast majority of desertions happen inside the USA, Robbins says. There is only one known case of desertion in Iraq.

    Most deserters return within months, without coercion. Commander Randy Lescault, spokesman for the Naval Personnel Command, says that between 2001 and 2005, 58% of Navy deserters walked back in. Of the rest, the most are apprehended during traffic stops. Penalties range from other-than-honorable discharges to death for desertion during wartime. Few are court-martialed.”

    I wasn’t trying to compare a single police department in the south to the entire US military. Just comparing that both occupations have their flight risks, and it seems one has a much high number than than the other.


  • Common Sense

    Wow, from 1990 to 2007, 43,000 service personnel deserted….

    US army desertion rate at lowest since Vietnam
    By Sig Christenson (AFP) – Nov 7, 2011
    SAN ANTONIO, Texas — The US Army’s desertion rate dropped sharply in the past year to the lowest point since the Vietnam war, a welcome relief which experts believe is thanks to a sputtering economy, better recruits and the drawdown of US forces in Iraq.

    “The Army right now is in a place where it can be very selective of the soldiers that it recruits,” said Pentagon spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Steve Warren “and because of that we are bringing into the Army the very best that America has to offer.”

    Despite a patriotic surge in the wake of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the Army had trouble keeping its ranks filled amid the intense pressures of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

    The desertion rate actually jumped in the wake of the attacks, with 4,399 soldiers fleeing their posts in 2001, and began to rise as Iraq unraveled in 2005 and 2006.

    It peaked during the 2007 surge to 4,698 troops, which was just under one percent of the service rolls and the Army’s highest desertion rate since records became available in 1970.

    A 2002 Army report found that the number of deserters and AWOL soldiers usually rises in wartime as more demands are placed on troops and enlistment standards are lowered — something that happened as Iraq careened into chaos.

    Those deserting also rose amid programs like “stop-loss,” an Army program that kept thousands of GIs on active duty after their commitment expired during part of the Iraq war.

    Another factor could be that the Army was forced to loosen its recruitment standards by expanding the admission of felons, high school drop outs and recruits with the lowest scores.

    That changed in 2008 when the US economy fell into the deepest economic downturn in decades.

    Just 1,202 soldiers were dropped from the service’s rolls after being labeled deserters in fiscal year 2010, which ended September 30. The number is down by nearly third from the 2009 total of 1,717 troops and is the lowest percentage for desertion since 1973.

    While the economy plays a role in driving recruits and troop retention, desertion is often more complex and personal, said Bernard Trainor, who led Marine recruiting in the Northeast from 1974-1976 and co-wrote an acclaimed history of the Iraq invasion.

    “The economy has got to be a player, but it’s not the 100-percent factor, and I don’t know what the other percentage is because there’s a lot of other motivations that attract or drive people into the military,” Trainor told AFP.

    “Therefore, with them being more selective, they’re getting a better-quality guy and that automatically is going to lower the dissatisfaction rate and, with it, the desertion rate.”

    University of Maryland military sociologist David Segal studied the phenomenon with researcher D. Bruce Bell in the 1970s.

    He said soldiers deserting during Vietnam generally did so because of financial or family problems, or because they could not adjust to life in the military.

    Vietnam’s bitter legacy and the early years of a volunteer military led to a force beset by drug abuse, racial strife and poor-quality trainees.

    Evidence of trouble in the ranks was borne out virtually every week as FBI agents brought Marine deserters to Trainor’s Garden City, New Jersey headquarters. “We found the Vietnam-era deserters to look like World War II and Korean War deserters,” he said. “They tended to be young, unmarried, less well educated, in lower mental-aptitude categories, in less-skilled military occupations, and in the lowest pay grades.”

    It was not uncommon for the wayward troops to say they ran from their posts because of fears over violence — and even being killed by other Marines.

    “Most of the deserters were the bums, the slime, but there was a significant percentage of people that deserted at that time because the quality of life and the leadership was so bad in their perception, and for them, it was a rational decision,” Trainor told AFP.

    Today’s soldiers are older, better educated, and more likely to be married and holding more-skilled occupations than their draftee and early-volunteer force counterparts, said Segal, the military sociologist.

    The Army also has an array of programs to help soldiers and their families deal with financial and social issues that did not exist during the Vietnam era.

    The Army classifies soldiers as deserters after they have been absent without leave for a month. The bulk are typically lower-ranking GIs who have not finished their first year of duty.

    Soldiers deserting in times of war can be executed. But a review of Army judicial records shows that just 1,213 desertion cases were tried from 1990 to 2007, averaging slightly more than 71 a year.

    Over that time, at least 43,810 deserted.

    “The normal way you get rid of them is with an administrative separation called a Chapter 10, a discharge in lieu of court-martial,” said one-time Army lawyer Geoffrey Corn, a professor at South Texas College of Law in Houston.

    “It’s a plea agreement.”

  • shawn


    Actually, most of those cops never existed. It was learned that NO padded their numbers for federal money, and then used the desertion claims to explain away where the cops where when they were needed. Of course no one was punished.

    NO cops had a lot of bad press during that storm, but actual desertions weren’t a real issue.

  • Most of us realize when the heat gets turned up the pigs are the first to run. That’s what pussies do. I called out this one local revenue collector to come to Afghanistan and harass me because then it would be level playing field. I told him he could and should bring friends, pack a lunch cause its gonna be a long day and his service weapon with him. (Civilian here; no gun). I would pay for all 4 or 6 plane tickets on top of that. Free plane fare, a chance to rough someone up with your criminal friends that also have guns and I’m unarmed and guess what! He turned down my offer. Its so easy to get pigs to show their true colors; vagina.

  • Keith

    Wow, i am so glad i’m a bit older and not retarded like some on this site. Fuck, have you no ability to comprehend what you read???? If some of you would like, I can give you a breif explanation of our constitution. This is clearly 3rd amendment. They comendeered his home for official government use. The amendment was specifically written for that. It’s not about soldiers, it’s about force. Armed government employees forcefully take your dwelling, restrain you, and than do the same to your parents. I know some are fucking idiots, common and the other ladies come to mind, but how fucking plain does it have to be. Outside of that, this is so horrible, they should all be jailed for this. Too bad the home owner was carrying and just squeezed off 13 rounds at these fuckers. Fucking tyrants.

  • shawn


    The 3rd isn’t simply about a place to sleep. It is about preventing the seizing property for their own use, against the will of the owner. They wanted it for ‘tactical’ purposes.

  • Keith

    @Shawn, yup, that is exactly what I was saying. They took this man’s house by force to do government business, which is exactly what the 3rd amendment was written for. It used British soldiers as examples, but it was for all armed government entities. Every single one of our amendments were born from British tyranny or American bigotry. Those are the 2 unnoficial categories. Bear arms, freedom of religion, quartered, et al were in direct response to oppressive government. Unlike some of these fools here think, the 3rd amendment is not there to protect us from the British sailing over and comming into our homes for a place to sleep. Yeah, that’s probably not the reason.

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