Broken Doors

By The Washington Post

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With a typical search warrant, police are supposed to knock and announce themselves. But with no-knock warrants, police can force their way into people’s homes without warning. This six-part investigative podcast from The Washington Post sheds light on how easy it is to plan, obtain and execute no-knock warrants — one of the most intrusive and dangerous police tactics. We explore the consequences when these warrants become the rule, rather than the exception. Hosted by investigative reporters Jenn Abelson and Nicole Dungca, “Broken Doors” is about how no-knock warrants are deployed in the American justice system — and what happens when accountability is flawed at every level.

Episode Date
Episode 6: "You having citizens getting shot, and you having police getting shot."

A man accused of killing an officer during a no-knock raid speaks from jail about the risks to people on both sides of the door. As we investigate the history of these raids, we put our questions to him and the mother of Breonna Taylor, both of whom are pushing for an end to no-knocks. We’ll also hear from people who say this tactic is necessary. How did we get here – and what does the future look like?

May 04, 2022
Episode 5: "What about my house? What'd you find there?"

Police upended the lives of an entire block and killed a 63-year-old grandfather when they carried out a no-knock raid at multiple homes in St. Louis. But what did the police actually seize?

Apr 27, 2022
Episode 4: "The blink of an eye"

On July 25, 2019, a Black man was killed during a no-knock raid on a motel room in Louisiana. His fiancee was also inside. An investigation into what led up to the fatal shooting reveals the speed with which it happened — and raises questions about electronic warrants, a relatively new technology being adopted by law enforcement agencies around the country.

Apr 20, 2022
Episode 3: "You're interrogating me"

After hearing from survivors of no-knock raids and learning about the deadly consequences, we put our questions directly to the sheriff and the judge who had allowed these raids in Monroe County. People in the community still live in fear as Ricky Keeton’s family continues their battle for justice.

Apr 06, 2022
Episode 2: "Why y'all had to go in that way?"

Around 1 a.m. on Oct. 28, 2015, the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office hurled a battering ram into the home of Ricky Keeton to carry out a no-knock search warrant. After the raid turned deadly, Ricky’s family confronted the sheriff — and began secretly recording. 

Apr 06, 2022
Episode 1: "That's what you get"

Sheriff’s deputies burst through the front door of a man’s home as he slept. He said they pointed a gun at his head and ransacked his home in search of drugs and cash. The no-knock search warrant they used was threadbare. But that wasn’t the worst of it.

The Washington Post’s Jenn Abelson and Nicole Dungca started identifying unusual warrants almost from the moment they began their investigation into no-knock raids. When Jenn looked more closely at documents from a rural county in Mississippi, she got a startling view into how little it took to execute a no-knock warrant in Monroe County.

Apr 06, 2022
Introducing "Broken Doors"

No-knock warrants allow police to force their way into people’s homes without warning. What happens when this aggressive police tactic becomes the rule, rather than the exception? 

"Broken Doors" is a new investigative podcast series about how no-knock warrants are deployed in the American justice system - and the consequences for communities when accountability is flawed at every level. Hosted by Jenn Abelson and Nicole Dungca.

Mar 24, 2022