CA11: QI for FBI SWAT raiding wrong house at 3:30 am

“In Hartsfield, we explained that an officer who makes ‘reasonable effort[s] to ascertain and identify the’ target address of a valid search warrant complies with the Fourth Amendment even if error is ultimately not averted. 50 F.3d at 954-55 (quoting Garrison, 480 U.S. at 88-89). Appellants contend that Guerra failed to make reasonable efforts to identify 3741 Landau Lane before mistakenly executing the warrant at their house. Specifically, Appellants argue that Guerra did not conduct a site survey or drive-by of 3741 Landau Lane prior to the warrant execution. Assuming Guerra failed to conduct a survey or pre-raid drive-by, the other actions he took to identify 3741 Landau Lane were ‘consistent with a reasonable effort to ascertain and identify the place intended to be searched.’ See Hartsfield, 50 F.3d at 955 (quoting Garrison, 480 U.S. at 88-89). He reviewed the operation order and SWAT addendum; he attended an operational briefing that consisted of several presentations displaying photographs of Riley and 3741 Landau Lane; and he selected a staging area and made tactical notes that considered the location and features of the target address. [¶] Additionally, the fact that the target address and Appellants’ house share several conspicuous features demonstrates that Guerra’s execution of the warrant at the wrong house constituted an inadvertent mistake.” Martin v. United States, 2024 U.S. App. LEXIS 9619 (11th Cir. Apr. 22, 2024).

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