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Durham fake 911 calls: Police caught using fake 911 to bypass law

Durham fake 911 calls used as excuse by police department to enter homes with outstanding warrants.
Durham fake 911 calls used as excuse by police department to enter homes with outstanding warrants.
Commons Wikimedia

Durham police officers used fake 911 calls as a reason to search homes of those who had outstanding warrants. The local police chief learned of the deception, and has barred the department from 911 calls, according to News Max on July 15.

Durham Police Chief Jose Lopez wrote this in a memo seen on IndyWeek:

"It has recently been brought to my attention that some officers have informed citizens that there has been a 911 hang-up call from their residence in order to obtain consent to enter for the actual purpose of looking for wanted persons on outstanding warrants.

"Effective immediately no officer will inform a citizen that there has been any call to the emergency communications center, including a hang-up call, when there in fact has been no such call."

In February Officer A.B. Beck knocked on the door of someone who was charged for possessing marijuana. He told the woman who answered the door that a 911 call was made from the home, but they hung up. Beck wanted to go inside the house to make sure everything was okay. Once inside, he noticed two marijuana blunts and a marijuana grinder.

In a May 27 hearing, the Durham officer admitted to the fake 911 call and intended to serve a warrant, but never produced onein court. Beck says the calls were also a ruse in domestic violence situations.

The unidentified individual charged with marijuana possession had charges dropped because no sufficient evidence was provided in court. The department is "looking into" why some of the police in Durham used fake 911 calls as a good excuse to enter homes based on a lie.