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Wrong-House Raid Leaves Innocent Man Dead; He May Have Thought Police Were Burglars

Wrong-House Raid Leaves Innocent Man Dead; He May Have Thought Police Were Burglars

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Ismael Lopez likely did not know that the person who killed him in his own home was a police officer. He was shot when officers were trying to serve a warrant in a tragic wrong-house raid Sunday night.

Officers did not realize they were at the wrong home until after Lopez was dead, The Washington Post reported. Lopez apparently was shot simply because he was holding his gun in his hand when he opened the door.

“The deceased subject had absolutely no warrant for his arrest,” District Attorney John Champion told Jackson, Miss., CBS affiliate WJTV. “He wasn’t wanted for anything at all. I want to make that abundantly clear at this point.”

‘Put the Gun Down!’

Southaven, Miss., police were at the mobile home park where Lopez lived to serve an aggravated assault warrant on someone else but, for unknown reasons, cops went to the wrong house.

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Lopez, who was in bed, apparently heard someone at his door, got up and grabbed his gun.

“The officers began hollering ‘Put the gun down! Put the gun down! Put the gun down! Put the gun down!’ at which point that did not occur,” Champion said. “More than one shot was fired toward the door. There was a subject, a male subject, inside the residence that was killed as a result of this gunfire.”

Friends of Lopez said the shooting never should have occurred.

“If you’re shooting through a door in that manner, you don’t know who’s behind that door,” friend Jordan Castillo told reporters.

Castillo showed reporters three bullet holes in the door.

“They’ve been in that home for 13 years,” family attorney Murray Wells told WMCA TV. “The only time the police had ever been there was when they had been robbed.”

Lopez had no criminal history.

“A long-standing employee of the city of Bartlett, a mechanic. Loved in the neighborhood,” Wells said.

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