A 19-month-old baby was critically injured during a SWAT raid after an officer threw a stun grenade into his playpen.
According to reports, Wisconsin mom Alecia Phonesavanh was visiting her sister-in-law in Atlanta, Georgia when police raided the house. Phonesavanh was with her husband Bounkham and their children, including 19-month-old Bou Jr.
Officers say they bought drugs at the Atlanta home and came back with a no-knock warrant, so when they busted down the door, they followed standard procedure for that type of situation. They were unaware that there was anybody visiting or that children were in the home at the time, so as Cornelia Police Chief Rick Darby acknowledges, the baby getting injured after a stun grenade was accidentally thrown into his playpen was an unfortunate mistake.
“There was no clothes, no toys, nothing to indicate that there was children present in the home,” said Darby. “If there had been then we'd have done something different.”
Phonesavanh says that there is no excuse for critically injuring her 19-month-old son, who is now in a medically induced coma.
"It landed in his playpen and exploded on his pillow right in his face," said Phonesavanh. “He's in the burn unit. We go up to see him and his whole face is ripped open. He has a big cut on his chest. He's only 19 months old. He didn't do anything. It's my baby. He's only a baby. He didn't deserve any of this.”
The Phonesavanh family says they were visiting their family in Atlanta because their house in Wisconsin burned down, and they insist that they knew nothing about the drug issue in the home.
Darby says that the police department will learn from this terrible mistake going forward.
“You're trying to minimize anything that could go wrong and in this case the greatest thing went wrong,” Darby said to a WSBTV reporter. “Is it going to make us be more careful in the next one? Yes ma'am, it is. It's gonna make us double question.”
The Phonesavanh family does not have health insurance, and a family friend has set up a GoFundMe project to help raise money that will be used to pay baby Bou’s medical bills.