SWAT Team Cleared in Murder of Former Marine

Remember the SWAT team in Arizona that stormed into Jose Guerena’s home and put 70 rounds into his home? Remember how I said the SWAT team was likely to receive nothing more than a paid vacation followed by clearance to return to duty? Well I hate being right in these cases:

The SWAT team that gunned down a former Marine in his Tucson, Ariz., home was cleared today of any wrongdoing in the incident.

Jose Guerena, 26, was killed in a hail of bullets from the SWAT team, which broke down the door to his home on May 5 while trying to serve a search warrant as part of a home invasion probe.

Guerena did not fire a single shot in the incident, but Pima County Chief Criminal Deputy Attorney David Berkman said in the report issued today that the five SWAT team members were justified in using deadly force because the former Marine pointed his weapon at them.

You have to admire how the fact that Mr. Guerena was pointing a weapon at the SWAT team because they came busting into his home is completely ignored. Mr. Guerena never fired a shot, likely because he was either identifying his assailants or because he had identified them but was unable to lower his weapon before being riddled with bullets. Oh, and get this:

“A close examination of the rifle revealed it appeared to have been damaged by being fired upon from such an angle that it must have been pointed toward officers,” Berkman wrote. “The officers were mistaken in believing Mr. Guerena fired at them. However, when Mr. Guerena raised the AR-15 semi-automatic assault rifle in their direction, they needed to take immediate action to stop the deadly threat against them.”

Emphasis mine. They were mistaken that Mr. Guerena fired at them? How do you make that kind of fucking mistake? An AR-15 is a fairly loud weapon especially when fired indoors and although I realize those SWAT team helmets likely muffle some sound I don’t think they can muffle gun fire as you can hear human voiced through the damned things. And the outrage doesn’t stop there ladies and gentlemen:

He said “many guns” were found in the house, including the AR-15 that Guerena was holding, another rifle and a handgun. Body armor and a U.S. Border Patrol hat also were found, he said.

“He was well-armed, well armored,” Krygier said.

But when asked if Guerena was wearing body armor at the time of his death, he said, “No. … He basically had a pair of boxer briefs on and that was it.”

What the fuck does that have to do with anything? I understand you SWAT team members made a huge fucking mistake and are trying to improve your image any way you can but trying to sully the image of Mr. Guerena but making him sound like a man up to something is disgusting. Owning firearms and body armor is irrelevant to the case beyond the point that it makes Mr. Guerena look crazy in the eyes of many people.

Either way I’m not at all surprised by this result. The police can get away with murder, literally, because the same legal system that employs them also determines the validity of their actions. When you get to determine the validity of your own actions you can get away with anything as this story proves.