We’ve all seen what happened to Anjanette Young. We know it could happen to us. It has happened to some of us already. Public pressure is building. The Chicago Police Department is currently accepting public comments on Special Order S04-19, which provides guidelines for search warrants. The Chicago Police Department & the Mayor’s response doesn’t solve the problem. The only solution is the Anjanette Young Ordinance that the National Pan-Hellenic Council of Chicago supports.We need you to submit a comment to the Chicago Police Department before the deadline of Thursday 3/18.
On December 14, 2020, Anjanette Young, a Chicago social worker, courageously released a video of the CPD’s raid of her home—video that the City of Chicago fought to hide from the public for more than a year. Officers burst into Ms. Young’s home while she was naked, pointed their guns at her, and handcuffed her. They held her naked in handcuffs for more than 40 minutes as they tore through her home, as they ignored her terrified pleas that they were in the wrong home. And they were in the wrong home. Like so many other CPD raids, readily available records showed that CPD’s actual target was confined inside another apartment on electronic monitoring and had no connection to Ms. Young or her home. As CBS 2 has highlighted in its award-winning investigative series, Anjanette Young’s story is just one egregious example of a documented pattern of illegal, violent, and dehumanizing raids that have traumatized thousands of Black and Brown families, for which CPD has failed to hold a single officer to account. These raids routinely involve breaking down doors and bursting into a family home, pointing assault rifles at everyone present including children, subjecting family members to physical and verbal abuse, destroying personal property, and then leaving families unprotected, with broken doors and locks, exposed and vulnerable to further violence. CPD conducts approximately 1,500 raids of family homes every year. Nearly all of them have targeted Black and Brown families. Nearly half fail to yield a single arrest. And no one has been held to account. The Chicago Police Department is currently accepting public comments on Special Order S04-19, which provides guidelines for search warrants. The proposed order does not go far enough! As drafted, the new Order fails to prevent the kind of violent and traumatizing home raids that Anjanette Young and so many others, including children and families, wrongly experienced.
About the Special Order
The CPD’s proposed Special Order will continue to allow the Police to commit wrongful, violent raids into the homes of Black and Brown families. It requires too few checks on the search warrant process, fails to stop excessive force, fails to protect women and children from brutal, humiliating and traumatic assaults, and fails to require sufficient accountability and transparency to the public. Unlike the proposed CPD Order, the Anjanette Young Ordinance would require all of these necessary reforms and was developed in partnership with people most impacted by CPD raids. If City officials truly want to stop this harm, they will listen to the voices of community members with lived experience—including Anjanette Young herself—and pass the Anjanette Young Ordinance. Until then, CPD should impose an immediate moratorium on all home raids.
Background on why the ordinance is needed
Unlike the Anjanette Young Ordinance, CPD’s proposed Special Order does not:
- Ban no-knock warrants.
- Require that officers wait at least 30 seconds during knock and announce raids to give residents a chance to open the door to their home.
- Require CPD officers executing home raids to act in a manner that is least intrusive and least harmful to the rights and safety of Chicago families.
- Protect children from trauma and harm, including by: prohibiting officers from pointing guns at children; avoiding raiding a home during a time when children are likely present; prohibiting handcuffing and interrogating children; and avoiding handcuffing parents in front of their children.
- Prohibit officers from pointing their guns at a person, unless the person presents an imminent risk of death or serious bodily injury to another.
- Require SWAT officers to document when they point guns at people during a raid.
- Prohibit midnight raids of family homes and require that home raids be conducted from 9am to 7pm, absent exigent circumstances.
- Require officers to prepare a damage report and make immediate arrangements to address safety concerns caused by a raid, such as the breaking down of a door, which leaves a family vulnerable.
- Require public reporting of data on all search warrants, including the causes of each negative raid, to give the community access and the means to hold CPD accountable.
- Prohibit officers from obtaining warrants based upon information from informants who have provided false information that have led to negative raids in the past.
Make your voice heard! Go to the CPD Policy comment portal and share your own thoughts or simply copy and paste in the message below. The deadline is Thursday, March 18th.