Monday, March 9, 2015

Austin Code Compliance's illegal 2011 "search warrant."

"And as they bound him with thongs, Paul said to the centurion who stood by, “Is it lawful for you to scourge a man who is a Roman, and uncondemned?”"
Acts 22:25

[Author's Note: The video below is a sped up version of the longform video found here.  Unfortunately, it's been set to the theme from Benny Hill.  That being said, it speaks for itself.]

Doing some follow up research on Don's proposal to make code compliance put skin in the game, we discovered this video from four years ago:

To quote the description in the video:
On April 13th, Austin Code Compliance executed a search warrant at a residential property in East Austin. The warrant was issued based on two suspected violations: that a tool shed was 6 inches too close to the neighbor's fence, and that a detached structure might be too tall. Both violations were in the backyard. Both were in compliance based on communication with city zone reviewers.

Code Compliance was convinced these violations still existed, and to investigate for themselves sent two code compliance investigators wearing bullet proof vests, five police officers and a health inspector. The eight officials entered the house and began to search every inch of the property, including bedrooms, closets, refrigerators, trash cans, cabinets, water heater closet, and the entire backyard.

The warrant turned out to be expired, however police returned several hours after the search to drop off an updated warrant.

Nothing was seized, and the investigators refused to comment on their findings. The original violations were likely cleared by this inspection, however a City Attorney representing Code Compliance indicates that the investigators will be having a meeting with representatives from other administrative departments in an attempt to think up any new violations that could possibly exist on the property.

To review, Austin Code Compliance arrived at a residential property wearing defensive armor, escorted by a police backup, executed an expired warrant that covered areas not under investigation, and is now having brainstorming sessions with other departments in an attempt to invent new violations.
 Umm...they can do that?!?

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