ACLU Tennessee brings suit against ICE officers who broke into house and said, "We don't need a warrant, we're ICE, the warrant is coming out of my balls."

The ACLU of Tennessee has brought suit against US Immigration and Customs Enforcement after a warrantless raid on an apartment complex where ICE officers believed some illegal immigrants were housed. After ICE agents broke into the complex and were asked for a warrant, one agent reportedly said, "We don't need a warrant, we're ICE," and, gesturing to his genitals, "the warrant is coming out of my balls."

Among the plaintiffs are U.S. citizens, including a child detained and interrogated while playing soccer on the playground simply because of the color of his skin. Looking Latino and speaking Spanish is not enough to justify probable cause for questioning and arresting a person. Another plaintiff was carted away in handcuffs in front of his frightened and crying children.

Unfortunately, the Clairmont raid is not an isolated incident. As the Department of Homeland Security and its enforcement arm, ICE, expand their aggressive immigration enforcement policies, all too often the constitutional rights afforded to everyone living in the United States are violated. Even as ICE carries out its mission, it must act in accordance with the law and in a manner that is humane.

(via Reddit)


  1. It’s gonna get worse before it gets better I’m afraid.  The 60’s are returning and it’s only been 50 years.  How quickly things go around.  Remember “We shall overcome”? I guess we have to do it again …

  2. I’m glad his balls are good for something as they obviously weren’t worth a damn when he should have told his boss, “no, I will not commit an illegal action”.

  3. I’m guessing that he actually said, “We don’t need no warrant, we the ICE, your warrant’s coming out my balls.”

    1. No, he said, “I am arrive from the ICE and my balls are too much swelling with warrant. Which is not needed.”

  4. They say that Alabama is having trouble obtaining cheap and powerless agricultural labor these days…

    Perhaps chain gangs of crooked ICE agents and dirty cops?

  5. Where did we fail in training our law enforcement that so many of them today never learned that their authority is derived from the law?

    They aren’t just granted authority which they must then restrict to stay in accordance with the law. They are given authority only to enforce the law. Where there isn’t law backing it up, there isn’t authority.

    Without justification by a warrant or probable cause, a cop can no more break into a person’s home than I can. Part of the problem is that the cop doesn’t go to jail for it like I would. I think that needs to change.

    It’s not illegal to insult a police officer on the sidewalk, just like it isn’t illegal to insult me on the sidewalk. If I respond to that by knocking your teeth out I go to prison. If a police officer does the same they’re docked a bit of pay and maybe need to take a couple weeks off of work. Vacations as punishment for assault.

    The law needs to apply more harshly to police officers, or they will not respect it, because there is nothing that requires them to. Would you obey the law if there weren’t consequences for ignoring it?

    1. I’ve said it a few times before, the more authority/power you hold, the more responsibility you have.  And in consequence, the punishment for being irresponsible should also be harsher.  The average Joe or Jane on the street isn’t expected to be fully aware of the law, so if that Joe or Jane breaks the law, of course there should be proper just punishment.  However, a police officer, a law enforcement person, a member of government, so on in the hierarchy…there is no doubt that it is expected of them to not only be aware of the law but also be educated about it, so when they break the law, they are doing so with full awareness of their actions, hence a stricter punishment.  And by giving that authority, responsibility, etc. to someone knowingly aware that the recipient has not been properly educated/trained, then the responsibility of guilt falls upon the person responsible for the education and training.

      In essence, the higher up the ladder you go, the more authority you have but it should also come hand in hand with the risk of a harsher punishment for abusing that authority given in trust that you will use it fairly and wisely.

    2. The law needs to apply more harshly to police officers, or they
      will not respect it, because there is nothing that requires them to.
      Would you obey the law if there weren’t consequences for ignoring it?

      The law needs to apply more harshly because police are supposed to be held to a higher standard than the rest of the population because they are supposed to have the public’s trust.

    3. “Would you obey the law if there weren’t consequences for ignoring it?”

      I think you’re not asking the right question.  I act in a moral way because I am a moral being.  I do not act in a moral way because most of my morality maps onto legal structures.

      I don’t refrain from killing people because it’s illegal.  I refrain from killing people because killing people is (almost always) wrong.

      These are parallel, but not necessarily, identical structures.

  6. I think people in the US need to re-read their Declaration of Independence again, especially the part that talks about altering or abolishing a government which has become destructive towards those it is supposed to govern:

    “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created
    equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with inherent and
    inalienable Rights; that among these, are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit
    of Happiness; that to secure these rights, Governments are instituted
    among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed;
    that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends,
    it is the Right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute
    new Government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing
    its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect
    their Safety and Happiness.”

  7. If the founding fathers of the US were alive today, I wonder what they would feel about the government they helped formed all those centuries ago.  Embarrassment? Shame? Anger? Disgust?  Because I certainly don’t think any of them would feel proud of themselves right now.

  8. If these agents can do this now and get away with it, then I can only wonder when they will find a reason to come after me or someone else for any number of warrant-less reasons. 

    An accounting must be made and this must end now.

  9. Sadly, this suit will probably go the way of most suits against law enforcement officers and especially federal ones.  It will get dismissed on “qualified immunity” grounds or some other technicality, or the judge will find as a matter of law that the HSI officers acted “reasonably”, or else the judge will rule that the plaintiffs’ damages are nominal, because they didn’t really suffer any “harm”.  I’ve been practicing law for 20 years now, and I’m pretty much resigned to the fact that judges, as a rule, just don’t give a crap about the rights of individuals.  They don’t care when police break down peoples’ doors, or point guns at their children, or falsely accuse them of crimes, or detain them by the side of the road for hours, or strip search them, or do any of the other humiliating, degrading, dehumanizing things that law enforcements officers regardless of whether or not it is necessary.  The Supreme Court is the worst–they are so far removed from the daily lives of ordinary Americans that just about any police activity is deemed “reasonable”, no matter how annoying, shocking, or aggravating it might be to real people.

  10. “Ok, well allow me to induce bio-electric transmission of said warrant aided by this lead-acid battery beside me. Which testicle is more suitable for the negative terminal?”

  11. America is becoming less ‘free’ than many Islamic or Communist countries. So busy screwing up the rest of the world not to see it’s screwing it’s own people into a 1% first world and 99% third world country.

  12. The number of actual Communist countries is vanishingly small (Cuba and, erm, that’s it*), and I don’t see why being majority-Muslim would necessarily make a country less free, unless by “Islamic” you mean “run according to sharia law”. Even with that, though, largely due to historical accident the vast majority of majority-Muslim countries have significantly less personal freedom than the US. Yes, that does include Turkey and Indonesia.

    *China and Vietnam are not Communist by any stretch of the imagination, and NK’s official ideology is now juche

  13. It is the very sad thing, but the ICE officer was actually stating the truth (despite of being rude and that the whole situation has nothing even close to the idea of  civil liberties).
    ICE, formerly INS, one of the least controllable US agencies, which enjoys no public or court overseeing. Even when they were NOT under the protective wing of DHS they were outside of the jurisdiction of any NORMAL American court: they have their own “Immigration court”, — they don’t need warrant for ANYTHING (their kangaroo court will back them up anyway).

    No matter how laughably it’s sounds but things with this agency actually got BETTER under DHS supervision — so unimaginably bad they were before 9/11. I know that first-hand because I am naturalized US citizen. (And that is why I will not post ANYTHING about ICE under my real name — this agency also known be fantastically vindictive). No, I am neither of African, Hispanic nor “Muslim” origin…  But you don’t have to be of any particular color. You are hated because you are immigrant and different: “I hate you ***************** (because all of you — immigrants — are just ****************)! Ones like you are actually worth — because you are look white  — but you are just white ******************!”

    Fortunately, I did not have to deal with Immigration Court for the last 11 years, but before it looks like that: neither you, nor your attorney are allowed to be present during the actual hearing, and (surprise!) if you are not OK with the verdict you may appeal successfully — but by the Immigration Law (in case of successful appeal) your case will be returned to the SAME judge for retrial (do you think he will just change his mind?) — and if you will be found guilty again (100% probability) you also will be charged with “obstruction of justice” (because you were stalling “the due process” with you “senseless appeals”). Judge will not only through you away from the country — he has power to ban you for the future entering in USA for 5, 10, 15 years or “for life”. Your marital status or kids doesn’t matter: that would be “soliciting marriage and children with purpose to stay in the country illegally”.
    I don’t believe that things have changed MUCH sins then…

    What always troubled me is that all this “rigor” did not applied for the international criminals, mafia, FSB and terrorists — and all bad people this agency is suppose to keep out of the country — they are actually still enjoying pretty much trouble-free ride…  It is only “small people” who got run over by this agency. So I smell a corruption — BIG TIME.

  14. Oh, Tennessee. Sometimes you make me embarrassed to be from there. But I swear, we’re not *all* bad.

    “Tennesseans’ attitudes toward immigration varied somewhat based on their level of education. More than 80 percent of people with a high school education or less said immigrants are a burden on American society, a view shared by only 47 percent of those with college degrees.”

  15. Poetic justice might be to take them from the officer in lieu of the warrant. Probably precluded by US “cruel and unusual” prohibitions, however.

  16. I’d rather have AC/DC coming out of my balls, but we raid with the cheezy metal we have, not the cheezy metal we wish we had – coming from our balls.

    1. Oh, don’t confuse Warrant with metal. Warrant is hair rock. AC/DC is considered metal by some, but never Warrant. (shudder)

  17. Now, IANAL, but I’m pretty sure you need a warrant. And the right kind, too.

    Mandatory video.

    Oh, and isn’t TN letting the TSA check out truck weigh stations and bus stations?

  18. Assuming most of you are not in criminal justice, I can understand your frustration. Clearly the officer was in the wrong, but let us not forget the average citizen these officers are dealing with on a daily basis. Media has a way of blowing things completely out of proportion, and for all we know the complainant was yelling profanity at the officer and demanding a warrant. If that was the case I can see how things may have gotten out of hand and the officer responded childishly. Just do not let one officer’s actions paint your entire perspective of those in ICE or the CJ system as a whole. There are many men and women who took these positions to protect your constitutional rights and keep you and your families safe from threats all over the world. 

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