Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot is accused of trying to block airing of video of cops raiding wrong home, cuffing naked woman
“I truly believe they would have shot me,” said Anjanette Young, a social worker who was handcuffed when Chicago police raided her home nearly two years ago
Chicago resident Anjanette Young, 50, said she was relaxing at home on the night of Feb 21, 2019, when a dozen male cops burst in with guns drawn and handcuffed her while she was naked
The arrest was wrong. The information leading to the arrest was wrong
She has since been seeking redress, while her attempts have been blocked by the city, at every turn
A police CI told the raid’s lead officer that he’d recently seen a known felon with guns and ammunition at the address – a wrong address
Officers failed to check verify that they had the correct address before obtaining their search warrant
The target of the raid lived in the unit next door to Young at the time of the raid and had no connection to her
The suspect reportedly, was also wearing an electronic monitoring device, making it even easier for officers to track his location
Chicago resident Anjanette Young said she was relaxing at home on the night of February 21, 2019, when police burst in with guns drawn and handcuffed her while she was naked.
The arrest was wrong. The information leading to the arrest was wrong. She has since been seeking redress, while her her attempts have been blocked by the city at every turn.
The city of Chicago attempted to block a local news station from airing recently obtained body camera footage of police mistakenly raiding the wrong home with guns drawn and handcuffing the clearly distressed, naked woman.
CBS2-TV released body camera footage on Monday night of officers forcing their way into the home of Anjanette Young nearly two years ago.
The 50-year-old clinical social worker, who helps victims of violence and mentors people of color going into her profession, had just finished her work shift at a hospital and was undressing in her bedroom when a group of male officers broke down her door with a battering ram.
“It was so traumatic to hear the thing that was hitting the door,” she told CBS2 in a televised interview as part of Monday’s report. “And it happened so fast, I didn’t have time to put on clothes.”
On Monday night, CBS 2 aired an exclusive investigation into Chicago Police handcuffing a woman [Young], naked, while they conducted a bad raid, on bad information, at her home.
By Tuesday night, there was public outcry calling out Chicago Mayor, Lori Lightfoot, and the city Law Department for trying to bury the police bodycam footage of the raid.
In the disturbing Feb. 21, 2019 footage, officers appear to have their guns drawn while they yell for Young to put her hands up. She can then be seen in the video fully naked with her hands raised, looking terrified and confused – CBS2 blurred parts of the video in which Young was shown naked.
One officer puts Young’s hands behind her back and handcuffs her, leaving her with no way to cover herself as police search her home.
An officer can be seen attempting to drape a short coat around Young’s shoulders, which still leaves her front fully exposed while police surround her.
Someone puts a blanket on her that keeps sliding open because she can’t hold it closed.
Eventually, an officer holds the blanket closed on her.
Young becomes increasingly and understandably distressed in the footage as officers refuse to tell her why they have raided her home.
She asks them repeatedly to let her put clothes on and tells them she believes they have the wrong information.
Young reportedly, told the officers at least 43 times that they were in the wrong home.
Instead, officers responded to her distress in a way that amplified it, telling her not to shout when she’d ask questions, she said.
“When I asked them to show me, when I asked them to tell me what they are doing in my house, and their response to me was just ‘shut up and calm down,’” Young told the station.
“that’s so disrespectful.”
Investigations found that the officers managed the raid failed to verify that they had the correct address before obtaining their search warrant.
A confidential informant had told the raid’s lead officer that he’d recently seen a known felon with guns and ammunition at the address, according to the police department’s complaint for a search warrant.
The address supplied by the informant apparently was wrong However, and there’s no evidence that officers independently verified the informant’s claim.
The target of the raid was living in the unit next door to Young at the time of the raid and had no connection to her. The suspect was also reportedly wearing an electronic monitoring device, which should have made tracking his location easier for law enforcement.
Moreover, the video shows that Young made multiple attempts to ask the officers: “Who are you looking for?”
“I’ve been living here for four years and nobody lives here but me,” she yelled.
“I’m telling you this is wrong,” Young continued. “I have nothing to do with whoever this person is you are looking for.”
Body camera footage also showed officers in a squad car looking at notes and saying, “It wasn’t initially approved or some crap.”
“They are adding trauma to people’s lives that will be with them the rest of their lives.
“The system is broken,” Young told CBS2.
Young fought for nearly two years to get the footage of the raid on her home released.
The Chicago Police Department initially denied her Freedom of Information Act request but eventually turned over the footage after a judge ordered it as part of Young’s lawsuit.
Hours before CBS2’s report on Monday, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s lawyers filed an emergency motion in federal court to try and stop the station from airing bodycam footage of the raid.
The lawyers also wanted Young punished, accusing her of sharing the video with a news outlet despite a confidentiality order.
“In open court, Defense Counsel specifically outlined concerns that this video would be shared with the media in a salacious and unfair manner designed to elicit a reactionary response, which carries the risk of poisoning the public’s view of the case,” the City’s lawyers said in their filing.
They also said the footage, which shows a naked woman in distress begging officers to leave because they raided the wrong home, paints “an inaccurate picture of what happened during the subject search warrant.”
CBS2 said it filed a response to the city’s motion calling it unconstitutional and an effort to suppress the station’s reporting. Incidentally while CBS2 was broadcasting the report, a judge denied the motion filed by the city.
In defense of their obstructionist posture, Chicago PD cited the fact that there is an open investigation with the city’s Civilian Office of Police Accountability.
COPA however, didn’t launch its investigation until nine months after the incident, when CBS2 first broke the story of the raid.
“Social workers are trained to have unconditional positive regard for clients,” tweeted Social Service Workers United-Chicago, a group of area social workers who advocate for improved conditions in the field.
“CPD’s behavior would not have been justified if they had violently raided the ‘right’ home, because everyone, regardless of what they are accused of, is entitled to constitutional due process.”
At a press conference for Chicago’s first COVID-19 vaccinations on Tuesday, a reporter asked Lightfoot why her office attempted to block CBS2 from airing the footage and also punish Young for sharing it.
“That was not something that happened on my watch,” the mayor started. “Because of the concern that we saw and was expressed, we changed the protocols for search warrants. It requires now two supervisors, it requires a pre-check of the location. And I’m not gonna sit here and tell you that we’ve solved every problem.”
“I watched that video and I put myself in that poor woman’s place and thinking about somebody breaking into your home … and the trauma that that causes,” Lightfoot continued. “I think we have taken steps to address that issue. This case was litigated in federal court. The federal judge put in place an order. There’s allegations she has violated that. But what I’ve directed my law department to is resolve any pending case with respect to Young’s situation.”
However, Chicago police have continued to ignore even the small search warrant policy changes Lightfoot made in February of this year, nearly two years after CBS2 began exposing botched Chicago police raids.