Houston police investigation into botched drug raid completed, turned over to prosecutors

Houston Chronicle | 5/15/2019 | Keri Blakinger, St. John Barned-Smith, Houston Chronicle
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Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo talks to the media during a press conference at the police station on Friday, Feb. 15, 2019 in Houston.

The Houston Police Department has wrapped up its investigation into a deadly January drug bust and turned a final report over to the Harris County District Attorney's office, authorities said Wednesday.

Development - Case - Step - Charges - Officers

The development moves the case one step closer to possible criminal charges against one or more of the officers involved in the bungled raid, which left a Pecan Park couple dead and blossomed into a broader scandal amid questions about the narcotics team's handling of the bust.

"The Houston Police Department has completed the criminal investigation and the officer-involved shooting investigation regarding the incident at 7815 Harding Street on January 28, 2019," Chief Art Acevedo said in a statement Wednesday afternoon. "Today, each of these separate investigations have been turned in to the Harris County District Attorney's Office."

Investigation - Police - Department - FBI - Rights

An ongoing administrative investigation continues in the police department. The FBI has launched a civil rights investigation and the district attorney's office has been reviewing more than 2,000 cases previously handled by two narcotics officers at the center of the raid.

Acevedo said police have "cooperated fully" with prosecutors.

Onset - Stone - Effort - Facts - Today

"As stated at the onset, we will leave no stone unturned in our effort to determine the facts," he said. "Today is a major step in that direction and we continue to be committed to a relentless pursuit of truth, transparency, and accountability."

In the weeks after police stormed through the front door of the small Harding Street home, case agent Gerald Goines retired under investigation following questions about whether he may have lied on the affidavit used to justify the no-knock raid that killed Rhogena Nicholas and her husband Dennis Tuttle. Goines' partner, Officer Steven Bryant, also retired under investigation.

Findings

Now, the findings from the...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Houston Chronicle
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