POLITICS
02/12/2013 03:34 pm ET | Updated Apr 14, 2013

Raid Of The Day: Sorry, Mr. Mayor

On the night of June 3, 1992, the Venice, Illinois SWAT team conducted a raid on a suspected crack house. Part of the team used a battering ram to break into the front of the house, while the other officers entered through a back window.

They quickly discovered that they had raided the wrong address. In fact, they'd later learn that they had just raided the home of their own mayor.

Venice Mayor Echols wasn't home at the time, but when he returned and saw the damage, he contacted the police. When he learned the damage was the result of a raid gone awry, he grew angry. "To tell the truth, I don't remember what they said because I was furious," Echols told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "If I'd been here and heard that going on I probably would have taken my pistol and shot through the door. I'd probably be dead. And some of the officers would probably be dead, too."

(The "Raid of the Day" features accounts of police raids I've found, researched, and reported while writing my forthcoming book Rise of the Warrior Cop: The Militarization of America's Police Forces. It's due out in July, but you can pre-order it here.)