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More Drug Raid Collateral Damage

Posted: Updated:

Keep an eye on this one:

Memphis Police Director Toney Armstrong confirms Martoiya Lang, 32, died as a result of her injuries. She has been with the Memphis Police Department since June 2003.

"We are asking that the city continue to keep her and her family in your prayers, she is the mother of four small kids," said Armstrong.

Officer Lang was shot, along with Officer William Vrooman, as they served a narcotics search warrant at 1062 Mendenhall Cove around 8 a.m.

The officers returned fire, shooting the 21-year-old suspect, who is now listed in critical condition at The MED.

According to Director Armstrong, Officer Vrooman, 32, is listed in stable condition. He has been with MPD since July 2007.

No mention of whether or not any drugs were found in the home, or what sort of raid this was. That it was done at 8 am suggests it was a volatile, dynamic entry raid. That police have yet to say if there were drugs in the home--and that the other person inside wasn't charged--usually (but not always) suggests there were none, or only a small amount. We'll see.

What we do know is that a woman is dead, four kids are without a mother, and two more people nearly lost their lives because of the ongoing drug war.

Meanwhile . . .

A former Old Dominion student says he was asleep in his bedroom on West 48th Street when men wearing masks barged in and attacked him.

Stephen Bowden says he thought he was being robbed, according to a lawsuit filed Thursday in U.S. District Court.

Police used a stun gun on Bowden's leg and chest, and he was handcuffed as part of a Norfolk police marijuana investigation that had nothing to do with him, according to his lawsuit, which seeks $2 million.

He alleges excessive force against 10 unnamed officers. The lawsuit says the incident happened Dec. 8, 2011, the morning Norfolk police made arrests following an investigation into marijuana in neighborhoods around Old Dominion University.

Ten adults, nearly all of them students, were charged with marijuana offenses, and most have since entered guilty pleas. Bowden did not have marijuana and was not charged, according to the lawsuit. He is now a law student at the University of South Carolina.

Looks like police in the Hampton Roads area haven't changed much of anything since Det. Jarrod Shivers was killed during a senseless raid on Ryan Frederick in 2008.

So long as America's police agencies continue to use violence to serve warrants on people suspected of nonviolent crimes, we'll continue to collect dead cops, suspects, and innocent bystanders; wrongly raided families and terrorized innocents; and lawsuits and settlements that, inevitably, are paid for by taxpayers.