Chicago Police Raided Wrong Home During 4-Year-Old’s Birthday Party, Pointed Guns At Children, Lawsuit Claims

A Chicago police car at a crime scene.
Scott Olson / Getty Images

Chicago police allegedly stormed into a home during a 4-year-old’s birthday party, smashing a birthday cake and pointing guns at children as they ransacked the home — all while looking for a suspect who had moved out five years ago.

The failed raid is now the subject of a federal lawsuit claiming that at least a dozen officers stormed into a home on the city’s South Side back in February, where members of the Bures family were hosting a birthday party for toddler Terrence Jackson Jr. As The Daily Mail reported, police had a warrant for a suspect they believed was in possession of drugs, but did not know that the suspect had moved out in 2014.

The federal civil rights lawsuit claims that the City of Chicago and the Chicago Police Department were responsible for the aggressive raid, during which members of the family said officers “terrorized” their family and even pointed a gun at the 4-year-old boy and his 7-year-old sister. They also smashed the birthday cake to the ground, family members said.

As CBS Chicago reported, police officers also shouted at family members and used profanity, which they said was distressing for the family and children. The report noted that the house was trashed during the search for the suspect and that the family members were left traumatized.

The suit is part of a string of legal actions against the Chicago Police Department for allegedly terrorizing innocent residents in mistaken raids. Attorney Al Hofeld, who represents that Bures family, has filed three other cases claiming that police used excessive force in raids on the wrong home in the city’s South and West sides.

The lawsuit claims that family members asked the police officers to see a copy of the search warrant, but offers refused and then tackled and handcuffed the family member who had been asking to see the warrant. Chicago police said search warrants must be presented to homeowners on request.

It was not clear what, if any, disciplinary action the officers faced.

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The family said officers also concealed their names and badge numbers so they could not be identified.

As CBS Chicago reported, there were at least four other cases of polices wrongly raiding homes with children inside, and that a total of 11 children were subject to these raids.

The Chicago Police Department had not yet commented on the lawsuit, ABC 7 reported. It was not reported exactly what the family was seeking in the federal suit.