Go, Go, Go!

October 7, 2014

All Posts, News

The thin grey line between federal justice and a cheesy Bruce Willis movie just got a little fainter.

In a substantially redacted summary judgment, a federal district judge in San Diego named Gonzalo P. Curiel (above) ruled last Wednesday that a Hells Angel named Maurice Peter “Pete” Eunice could not sue the Drug Enforcement Administration for property damage caused by a very violent raid on the Hells Angels clubhouse in El Cajon, California on August 2, 2011. Eunice owns the property and has rented it to the motorcycle club since 1996. Eunice filed two suits against multiple federal and local policemen on June 29, 2012 and January 2, 2013. The court consolidated the two suits in September 2013.

The raid seemed to be clearly intended to dramatically punish the Hells Angels charter by destroying the clubhouse on television. Although the DEA told the television crews that covered the stunt that the Agency was serving arrest warrants, the only occupant of the building at the time of the raid was a dog named Molly.

Pete Eunice’s Version

In the suit filed in January 2013, Eunice told the story this way:

“At the time that the agents blew up the doors and windows to his property, they knew that Mr. Eunice owned these properties. These agents knew Mr. Eunice’s contact information and they knew how to obtain the keys to the properties. Agents knew that there were no tenants inside the building. They did not contact Mr. Eunice. They instead contacted members of the media and multiple media outlets came to the properties.”

“Instead of contacting Mr. Eunice, they blew up the doors and windows using multiple explosives. These agents knew that there was no reason to blow up Mr. Eunice’s property. They acted out of malice in order to intimidate Mr. Eunice. These agents held animus and ill will toward members of the Hells Angels. They wanted to punish, deter and intimidate Mr. Eunice who leased his properties to the Hells Angels to use as their club house. Mr. Eunice had a due process right to be free from the arbitrary exercise of the powers of government. These agents including Doe defendants made a deliberate decision to deprive Mr. Eunice of his property.”

“After they caused explosions and a fire at the property, causing extensive damage to the frame and foundation of the buildings, Patrick Ryan called Mr. Eunice to let him know that he should come out to the property. The explosion was of such magnitude that the City had to shut off the main pipes that run deep beneath the properties due to the damage to the pipes and water leaks. Agents Ryan, Kelly, Mervos, Watrous, Kingkade and DOE defendants knew that three-year old dog Molly, was in the courtyard of the properties. They knew that using explosives would frighten the dog and cause physical harm to her. After the explosions, these agents let Molly out of the property and out into traffic on El Cajon Boulevard.”

“After agents gained entry into the properties, they continued their destruction by smashing windows and throwing the photographs off of the walls and stepping on the faces of the people depicted in the photographs.”

“When Mr. Eunice arrived on his properties, he was met with six to nine law enforcement officers around the perimeter. Two officers carrying AR-15s and other law enforcement officials kept him outside for approximately thirty to forty minutes as they continued their destruction inside the properties. Patrick Ryan handed Mr. Eunice a copy of the warrant. Agents told Mr. Eunice that they were turning the building over to him to deal with the destruction.”

The Judgment

Eunice sued for intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligence, trespass to land and private nuisance. For almost two years, the governmental defendants whittled down the case with a blizzard of motions until the only claims that remained were for trespass and nuisance. And, in the end Judge Curiel seemed to ignore common sense by ruling that there were flaws in Eunice’s case.

First, the damage was done during the service of a federal search warrant. Patrick Ryan, the DEA agent in charge of the operation, presumably because he was serving a warrant on Hells Angels, decreed that it was a “high risk” search. And, since Eunice did not legally “challenge the validity of the search warrant,” it was a legal search.

Next, Curiel made much of the fact that it was the El Cajon Police Swat Team that blew up the clubhouse, not the DEA. Eunice had argued that it might as well have been the DEA because the two police forces were cooperating. But Curiel wrote that, “based on the facts before the Court, there is no indication that the DEA and the Swat team worked jointly in the execution of the entry into the Clubhouse. Moreover, Plaintiff provides no legal authority or additional facts that liability can be imputed to the United States of America based on joint action. Accordingly, Plaintiff has not demonstrated that there are genuine issues of material facts as to whether Defendant United States of America can be liable….”

Eunice had also argued that blowing up the clubhouse was actionable because it was legally a nuisance. But again, for the third time in his judgment, Cruel decided that the left hand and the right hand in the destruction of the clubhouse were totally independent of one another.

Curiel wrote: “Again, the threshold issue is whether the DEA can be liable for the conduct of the Swat team. Plaintiff alleges that since the Swat team was under the DEA’s direction, it is liable for private nuisance based on the use of the flash bangs and breaching charges. However, Plaintiff has not demonstrated that there are genuine issues of material facts as to whether Defendant can be liable for a claim of private nuisance. The facts show that the Swat team, not the DEA, executed the flash bangs and breaching charges. Plaintiff presents no additional facts or case law that Defendant would be liable for the acts of the Swat team.”

What Curiel did, after 18 months, was legitimize the DEA’s plausible deniability. “Based on the above, the Court grants Defendant United States of America’s supplemental motion for summary judgment on the two remaining causes of action for trespass to land and private nuisance. The hearing set for October 10, 2014 shall be vacated. The Clerk of Court shall issue judgment and close the case.”

It is a judgment that will probably make official scoundrels everywhere smile. Victims of official overkill, not so much.

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55 Responses to “Go, Go, Go!”

  1. Paladin Says:

    There seems to be a new “stand your ground” mentality that may soon be coming to a neighborhood near you!


    Long May You Ride (to those that deserve to),


  2. Austin Says:

    @panamaa- IMHO – The more people who read this site – the better. I refer to it and send people links to articles, frequently. The things which should be kept private- usually are.
    Rebel has his own personal reasons for starting this blog back in 2008 or so. You can read the details by searching back on the site, or buy his books on Amazon.
    I’m just another innocent bystander – oh wait – There ARE no innocents, just varying degrees of responsibility. Interestingly – as you see by the comments, other people across the country and globe – have similar interests and similar problems. What Rebel has created here is an open access point where we are not bound by colors, religion, sexual orientation, politics, gender, age or occupation and can contribute, rage, joke, swear, share our stories, poetry and tears freely, without retribution. You have to try really hard to get censored from here – although it has been done. I have learned many things from this crew – how to sex a fly, and how to (or not) talk to cops for example. I respect and appreciate the work that has been done here. I buy the product – I spread the word. We’ve all got to keep this light shining.
    Peace and bread, man. You can Paypal your appreciation to his email.

    @ Sieg; Ble Fates fortalte deg i dag ble ikke dagen? As you know – Sometimes it is better to fight another day.

  3. WheresMyBoots Says:

    @Sieg: a little late here but very sorry to hear of what you and your family went through.
    Be well, and Ride Free. The best to you and yours.

  4. Paladin Says:

    The Government’s strategy is a combination of siege and probing attacks. The Government surrounds the citizenry, using their Trebuchets to continuously launch laws and edicts over the enumerated protections that guarantee our freedoms.

    In order to effectively gauge what resistance there might be the Government probes with attacks that come in the form of “no knock” warrants, secret courts, where the Defendant’s rights are trampled, without due process, motorcycle “safety” and DUI checkpoints, etc.

    At some point, the Government will over play its hand. This almost happened at the Bundy ranch. Some of the citizenry in this Country appear to be waking up. The past lesson that’s being relearned is that a show of force is needed when trying to reason with an unreasonable Government.

    Long May You Ride,


  5. tiger Says:

    @ Sieg, glad you are OK and your family is safe for now.

    The killers in blue here are bragging about the chief of our township pigs being better trained by the fucking alphabet crew recently. It hit the news like it is something to be proud of. Bad enough the fuckers in Detroit killed a seven year old for being in the wrong house. The wrong fucking house. They raided the wrong house, killed a girl, and the fucking pig just got a second hung jury. If I went to the wrong place and did a murder do you think these fuckers would let me off as well?

    Sieg be safe. Maybe if karma is right we may end up having beers at the same get together. Fuck the pigs, Fuck the feds, and may the public wake up.

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