Instead of leaving with the drugs and weapons they were sent to find, a Minnesota SWAT team executed a “no-knock raid” that left a family’s two dogs dead.
“The first thing I heard was ‘boom,’” Larry Lee Arman told KMSP, recalling the raid which occurred in St. Paul at 7 a.m. on Wednesday.
“Bop, bop, bop, bop, bop. Right in front of us.”
Equipped with a warrant for drugs and weapons, the SWAT unit barged in while Arman was asleep on a mattress with his two children, shooting Mello and Laylo, the family’s two pit bulls.
“One was running for her life, and they murdered her right here,” Arman said, with his dogs’ blood still on his sneakers.
“I was laying right here, and I really thought I was being murdered.”
Camille Perry, Arman’s girlfriend and the mother of his two children, was in the bathroom when the SWAT unit broke down her door. She expressed anger that the kids could have been injured.
“The only thing I was thinking was my kids were going to get hit by bullets,” she told KMSP.
According to the station, the SWAT unit was executing a search warrant for weapons and drugs. After the shooting and a search of the house, the police unit recovered none of one and very little of the other, finding a small amount of marijuana residue, some clothing, and a bong.
St. Paul police told KMSP that the dogs were shot because the SWAT unit feared for their safety, and department policy allows for the removal of such threats.
Neighbors were also not pleased by the incident.
“All of a sudden, we see the dogs thrown out like pieces of meat, like they were nothing,” neighbor Shawn Miller told KMSP. “We teared up because they are like family to us. Those dogs are real good dogs.”