A Baltimore woman says if police had simply knocked, rather than barging into her home during a raid, the lives of a police officer and her nephew might have been spared.
Baltimore County police had a no-knock warrant to raid the home Tonya Smith on Aug. 28 in a search for her son, Rasheed Stanford, now 17, in connection with a nearby shooting, The Baltimore Sun reports. Stanford wasn't there, but another person in the house tried to flee as Smith and her young daughter hid under a bed. The chaos and ensuing shots fired killed Smith's nephew, Tevon Smith, 25, and a veteran police officer, Jason Schneider.
"It's bad two people had to lose their lives. It could've been prevented," Smith told the newspaper. She questioned why police used a no-knock warrant, arguing that her then-16-year-old son did not pose a threat to officers.
Smith spoke in court Wednesday during proceedings her son faces from the earlier shooting. She argues her son, who is being tried as an adult, is being unfairly held responsible for the death of Officer Schneider.
In court documents, police said members of the tactical unit made it clear that they were police officers. They also said Schneider held a ballistic shield with the word "police" written across its front, the Sun reports.