The notorious ‘Red Dog’ squad of Atlanta are once again under fire for harassing citizens and humiliating them to high-heaven, So what is it this time, you ask, Atlanta? Two men alleged that they were stripped and cavity searched along a public road in broad daylight when they were pulled over on a traffic stop. Victim and passenger Brian Kidd interviewed exclusively to recount the details of the tragic event, recalling that his roommate, Shawn Venegas, who was the driver of the car, was pulled over, told to strip and then fondled as the unit “searched for illegal drugs” to no avail. Says Kidd: “I had to look away because I couldn’t watch my friend be done like that.” Preceding the events, Venegas was so traumatized by the occurrence that he moved out of the state to avoid embarrassment Read the full complaint document here.
Subsequently, the two victims motioned to file a lawsuit against the City, however, lawyers advise that they halt any further action until a full investigation is complete. In the meantime, a spokesman for the police department issued this statement:
“The Atlanta Police Department is in the process of concluding the internal investigation into this matter. There is evidence to suggest that some of the officers’ actions during this traffic stop were inappropriate,” Campos said.
“As a result, Chief Turner intends to move swiftly to discipline some of the officers with actions – up to, and including, dismissal.”
According to Atlanta natives, the Red Dog unit is supposed to protect areas where drug-related activities occur, but a cavity search in broad daylight? I’m sure there are places for that sort of procedure (say, a POLICE INVESTIGATION ROOM). But let’s not forget: these paramilitary officers are notorious for being abrasive to Atlanta’s gay population, including an illegal botched raid on the Atlanta Eagle in which many of the club patrons complained of the ‘Dog’ unit’s use of anti-gay slurs, excessive force and unnecessary search tactics. This is the SAME unit that, more than 4 years ago, shot a 92-year-old woman in a hail of bullets after a botched raid on her home. They then tried to cover-up their mistake by planting drugs in her home. The woman’s family sued the City and won nearly $5 million in damages.
What could be the motivation behind this unit’s streaky past? Do you believe there are even some conscious officers on the squad who simply follow a corrupted order? Should the ‘Red Dog’ unit be removed from the force altogether?