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Police pepper spray Wake County teen inside his home after he's mistaken for burglar

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http://abc11.com/340724/

FUQUAY-VARINA, N.C. (WTVD) --

The parents of a Wake County high school student are outraged that police pepper-sprayed him inside their home after a neighbor mistook him for an intruder.

It happened Monday afternoon on England Avenue in Fuquay-Varina.

Ricky and Stacy Tyler have fostered 18-year-old DeShawn Currie for about a year. The Tylers, their three young children and DeShawn moved to Fuquay-Varina in July. They said while they're still getting to know their neighbors, it's hurtful someone would assume DeShawn was a burglar just for going about his normal routine of walking home after school.

"He's my baby boy just as much as my other three children are," said Stacy.

She left the side door to their home unlocked Monday for DeShawn, who was coming home early from school.

Fuquay-Varina police said when a neighbor saw DeShawn walk in; they called 911 to report a break-in. Soon, three officers were inside the house, all to DeShawn's surprise.

"They was like, 'Put your hands on the door,'" said DeShawn. "I was like, 'For what? This is my house.' I was like, 'Why are y'all in here?'"

DeShawn said he became angry when officers pointed out the pictures of the Tyler's three younger children on the mantle, assuming he didn't belong there. An argument ensued and DeShawn said one of the officers pepper-sprayed him in the face.


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With the way things have been going lately with trigger happy cops, he's probably lucky he didn't get shot. Should've just listened to the cops though. I don't know why people feel the need to escalate things.

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With the way things have been going lately with trigger happy cops, he's probably lucky he didn't get shot. Should've just listened to the cops though. I don't know why people feel the need to escalate things.

The cops should have listened to him too.

I agree though that the police escalated the situation.

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The cops should have listened to him too.

I agree though that the police escalated the situation.

It sounds like the cops did listen to him, otherwise they wouldn't have bothered comparing him to the family pics to see if he belonged there.

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I don't understand the need to get argumentative with the police. These are arguments that most of the time you will lose.

It's not a matter of logic. It's an emotional reaction to police walking into your house and accusing you of being a burglar. feels a little bit like being raped I would imagine.

I have to go back to being a teenager to relate to it.

I just got let off with a warning instead of a speeding ticket cuz I'm so white.

Edited by Dan and Judy

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It's not a matter of logic. It's an emotional reaction to police walking into your house and accusing you of being a burglar. feels a little bit like being raped I would imagine.

I'm sure I wouldn't appreciate being in that situation but I also think I'd keep cool enough to ensure that the situation is resolved calmly. There's nothing to be gained from getting pi$$y with the officers who are, after all, doing their job investigating a report of a burglary in progress.

FTR, I think having cops investigating a falsely reported burglary in one's home is nothing like being raped. Making such a statement minimizing the crime of rape makes you sound like a Republican running for office.

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I blame the parents, at his age we were not hanging around the house getting in trouble. We were out on the street looking for good wholesome fun (nuf said). What is it with kids nowadays ?


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I'm sure I wouldn't appreciate being in that situation but I also think I'd keep cool enough to ensure that the situation is resolved calmly. There's nothing to be gained from getting pi$$y with the officers who are, after all, doing their job investigating a report of a burglary in progress.

Yeah we all think we'd do the right thing if we're in a situation that didn't go well for someone else. Too often though that's not what happens. If a someone is in their home, doing nothing wrong, no criminal history, haven't broken any laws and a few cops bust in shouting orders, it wouldn't be surprising if the resident is demanding and becomes a bit hysterical.

By the way the police seemed as if they were being a smart mouth with the picture argument.

Edited by aaydrian

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Yeah we all think we'd do the right thing if we're in a situation that didn't go well for someone else. Too often though that's not what happens. If a someone is in their home, doing nothing wrong, no criminal history, haven't broken any laws and a few cops bust in shouting orders, it wouldn't be surprising if the resident is demanding and becomes a bit hysterical.

By the way the police seemed as if they were being pi$sy themselves with the picture argument.

I've had encounters with the police - few but I've had them. Never lost my cool and certainly never tried to argue with the officer.

The police officers weren't pi$$y about the pictures, they were investigating a call about a burglary in progress. They enter the residence and find a black guy in his late teens in the house claiming to be once of the family's children. Then they see the family photographs with three itty bitty little white kids. There's a gap there that might suggest to the officers that maybe they are not being told the truth by the teen. Now add the teen being argumentative and belligerent and I can see how the cops draw the wrong conclusions.

Should the officers apologize to the family? Depends on the whole story - all we're hearing here is one side of it.

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If the cops were called to 1000 homes with only pictures of 3 white kids up to like 6 years old on the wall ,and walked in on a black guy with a beard probably 999 times it would be a burgler.

is my white showing? :)

No, I don't think it's unreasonable for the cops to question the situation. Had they just taken his word and left, we'd probably hear a story about the police failing to properly investigate the reported burglary. The family would then point out that any person with reasonable judgement would have questioned the teen based on what the cops must have encountered in the home.

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