Our house was searched with a search warrant, we had no clue about it and at the end we were the victims and not the convict.

Asked over 1 year ago - Pasadena, CA

Police came thudding on my door early morning, searched our house, i was taken outside at gun point, my 4 yr old son was sleeping inside, my husband was caught on the way to work, officers searched our car. we were searched for fraud activities with stolen credit card, and the purchases were made using the IP address of our computer. i cried, had no idea what was happening. finally, they knew someone hacked in our wi fi and did illegal purchases. can i do something for the mental trauma we all got? my heart still misses a beat at the knock on the door. my house is still in a mess, i am not able to put together everything yet. Please let me know if I have any right to voice my agony and disappointment. We are hardcore honest people

Additional information

Thank you all for your responses. Police was CHP (California Highway Patrol) and cops from LA county both. (Also a lady cop). They did not damage any stuff, but messed our organized papers and files, took out all the stuff from closet and left it there. This thought came to my mind too that if they took anything. In the end one cop said to me, 'we are not keeping the stuff back because your son is sleeping, he will be awake if we keep them back.' They also added, ' You have lot of stuff in your home.'
Our wifi was password protected. They took our router and a correspondence addressing myself and my husband as an address proof. Yes, they gave us a receipt for that. I also saw my driver's license picture in their file which means they already did our background check. i have nothing to fear, but i feel disrespected and interfered (in a bad way) as an honest citizen. Myself and my husband will talk with an attorney as per all your advise. Thank you all again.

Attorney answers (6)

  1. Neil James Fraser

    Contributor Level 15

    6

    Lawyers agree

    1

    Answered . It's unfortunate, but, if someone hacked your IP address and used it for fraudulent purposes, the police weren't to know that and a court would probably hold probable cause existed to execute the search warrant.

    You might, however, consider filing a claim with the city (if it was PPD) for the damage sustained to your property (which must be filed within 6 months of the incident). The city may be willing to reimburse you for that.

    Unfortunately, these criminal hackers will cruise neighborhoods searching for unlocked and unprotected WiFi, then sit outside the house where they find one with a laptop and do the dirty deed. Even if your WiFi was locked, it may not be completely secure. We sometimes pay a price for the convenience of technology. I'm sorry you suffered this trauma.

  2. Vijay Dinakar

    Pro

    Contributor Level 17

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    Lawyers agree

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    Answered . Hire a civil rights attorney ASAP to sue the cops. Though the cops may have had a warrant, there are still several issues: the warrant may have been based on known falsehoods known by the police when search warrant was written; the police may have exceeded the scope of the warrant as to
    areas, persons, and time of search permitted by judge granting warrant; the polive may have physically assaulted you or family members using excessive force causing physical injury
    and pain and suffering; police may have violated standard procedures in executing warrant, entering home, drawing firearms, and using physical force thus helping your case, police may have caused severe property damage or actually engaged in theft of property in your residence (this doesn't just happen in movies, cops routinely steal cash, jewelry and other valuables in the course of conducting licit and illicit searches of individuals' persons or property). Hire an aggressive civil rights attorney, cops are not Gods, they are often corrupt, violent, and dishonest. Best of luck.

  3. Joshua Matthew Dale

    Contributor Level 13

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    Lawyers agree

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    Answered . You should file charges against the City of Pasadena and the County of LA,? is it? Take your copy of the search warrant to a "1983" attorney right away - there is a 6 month deadline to file a complaint - don't miss it. Sue the bastards.

  4. Joseph Salvatore Farina

    Contributor Level 17

    3

    Lawyers agree

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    Answered . You should consult with a civil rights attorney who handles civil rights actions against governmental entities. There are strict filing deadlines if you want to sue a governmental entity, so you should consult with an attorney as son as possible.

    The information and legal suggestions made herein do not in any way create an attorney-client relationship. The... more
  5. Seth Andrew Weinstein

    Contributor Level 15

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    Answered . There are 3 things you need to do: 1) Contact a criminal defense attorney to fight the fraud/theft case in Pasadena Court, 2) file a claim with the city to replace your property and 3) Think about filing a 1983 Civil Rights claim against the city.

    Many times, Investigating Detectives are willing to work with criminal defense attorneys on these cases to even resolve them prior to court.

    Seth Weinstein, Esq.
    Southern California Criminal Defense Attorney
    (310) 707-7131
    www.sethweinsteinlaw.com

    This reply should NOT be considered a legal opinion of your case / inquiry. At this time I do not have sufficient... more
  6. Michael Kevin Cernyar

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

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    Lawyers agree

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    Answered . I have been a cybercrime attorney for many years. The key is not what you were told, but what happened. Did they take anything from your home? If not, then contact a civil rights attorney.

    If they did take something, did they leave a receipt for the items that were taken. If they did take items, then forget the rhetoric since it is likely that they wanted you to believe that they were on your side so that they call pump you for information, which you may consider not relevant, but they consider very relevant.

    Michael K. Cernyar
    www.DigitalEsq.com
    The Internet Attorney who is equally adept at pursuing perpetrators and defending his clients.

    The response above is not intended as legal advice since it’s impracticable to provide thorough, accurate advice... more

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