Police raid leaves one dead
POMPANO BEACH, Fla. (WSVN) -- A police raid turned fatal after a homeowner, police said, forced deputies to shoot.
The incident occurred at a home located at 301 SW 18th Court, at around midnight, Saturday.
According to Broward Sheriff Al Lamberti, authorities conducted surveillance on the home and knew the residence was a drug house.
BSO obtained a search warrant for the home, and BSO SWAT Team and Pompano SET detectives entered the residence.
Lamberti said the homeowner, Brenda Van Zwieten, 52, did not cooperate with deputies, and they were forced to fire. "The SWAT Team was confronted by an armed suspect, brandishing a loaded .357 Magnum revolver. Unfortunately, they did what they had to do to protect themselves," he said. Police shot Van Zwieten several times, and she died in her bedroom.
Van Zwieten's son, Robert Singleton, noted that his mother was in bed when the SWAT Team arrived, and she slept with a gun because she had been threatened recently. "She heard an unusual noise coming through her sliding glass door, and I don't know what to say happened because no one will give me an honest answer."
Singleton also said that deputies did not produce the search warrant until hours after the incident. "They left the warrant here, but it's all hand-scribbled. It's not a true document. A true document is supposed to be typed up, not scribbled," he added.
According to Van Zwieten's family, she was not a drug dealer and did not intend to shoot at deputies. The family also said there was so much activity around Van Zwieten's home because friends of her two dead children visit her occasionally. However, Sheriff Lamberti said the SWAT Team was justified in shooting Van Zwieten. Officers seized four weapons and many drugs from the home. "The results of the search warrant: numerous," said Lamberti. "324 grams of marijuana, four grams of crack cocaine, even a gram of heroin. Six marijuana plants, $550 in cash."
"I'm sure that the neighbors are relieved. They're the ones that gave us this information, and we put a drug den out of business in their neighborhood," Lamberti said.
Police made four arrests during the raid. Three of the four people arrested have bonded out of fail. The fourth person remains in the Broward County Jail.
The two deputies who fired their weapons during the raid have been placed on administrative duty.
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