Jason and Laura Hagan claim that on Sept. 30, 2011, the Nodaway County Police Department staged a raid on their Missouri home with Tasers and pepper spray.
A lawsuit recently filed by the Hagans claims that the raid was a follow-up to a report by Child Protection Services (CPS) agents who investigated the couple because they were homeschooling their children. The Hagans say the CPS agents claimed they had a “messy house.”
The Hagans assert that they were harassed by CPS multiple times and refused to allow a CPS agent back into their home, noted TheFreeThoughtProject.com.
The family's lawsuit says that the CPS agent called Nodaway County Sheriff’s Deputy David Glidden and Sheriff Darren White.
The officers came to the Hagan home, but Jason informed them that they needed a search warrant.
Deputy Glidden allegedly partially opened the front door of the Hagan's home and pepper sprayed Jason and Laura in the face.
According to the Hagans' lawsuit, Deputy Glidden also fired his Taser into Jason's back. When Laura tried to shut the door, Deputy Glidden allegedly fired his Taser three more times at Jason.
Sheriff White and Deputy Glidden allegedly forced the front door open and found the couple on the floor writhing in pain. The lawsuit says that Deputy Glidden pepper sprayed Laura in the face a second time, while Sheriff White sprayed Jason.
The Hagans' lawsuit claims that Sheriff White and Deputy Glidden sprayed the family dog with pepper spray and threatened to shoot the animal for barking.
The raid took place in front of the Hagan's three children who had to go to the ER where doctors checked to see if the kids had been injured from inhaling the pepper spray.
The Hagans were charged with resisting arrest and child endangerment, but a judge dropped the charges.
“The State has not offered sufficient, if indeed any, evidence of an exception that would justify a warrantless entry,” ruled the judge.
Now that the Hagans no longer face criminal charges, the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) has filed a federal civil-rights lawsuit on the couple's behalf against Sheriff’s Deputy David Glidden and Sheriff Darren White.
HSLDA Senior Counsel James Mason stated in a press release: "All too often, law enforcement officers and child-welfare workers act as if the Fourth Amendment does not apply to CPS investigations. They are wrong. The Fourth Amendment is a legal shield that protects people from exactly the kind of mistreatment the Hagans endured.
"Law enforcement can only work if our officers follow the laws themselves. If we stand by and allow law enforcement to flagrantly disregard our Fourth Amendment rights, those rights will be eroded and eventually ignored," added Mason. "And real parents and real children will continue to be harmed."
Sources: HSLDA, TheFreeThoughtProject.com / Image Credit: jasonesbain