by Douglas Ankney
Two police officers from Gowanda, New York—Sean Hotnich and Richard Cooper—claimed they got several “key details” wrong in their affidavit supporting a search warrant, as well as in their police report. For example, the police report states that once the two officers entered David Yezek’s kitchen, “patrol then observed two large bags of suspected marijuana in plain view on the dining room table.”
But Yezek’s private security cameras did not show two large bags of suspected marijuana on the table, and certainly, none in plain view. Rather, the cameras revealed the officers found two large bags of marijuana inside an opaque bag on a chair near the table after they got inside Yezek’s home and walked into the dining room. And getting these “key details” wrong was highly significant since the officers claimed that seeing the two large bags of marijuana in plain view was their justification for entering and searching Yezek’s home.
The police report also stated that Yezek granted the officers permission to enter his home. But the security camera outside Yezek’s home shows both officers entered an enclosed mudroom after one of them pushed open a gated door of the residence without permission.
Yezek is suing the police and one of his attorneys told reporters “if Yezek did not have the security cameras in and outside of his home, he very well could be sitting in prison.”
It appears the “key details” should be “cops barged into home without permission, illegally searched it, and then lied about the search to hide their misdeeds.”
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