ATLANTA: Were Eagle Raid Cops Drunk?

According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, some of the undercover cops that took part in the now-infamous raid on the Atlanta Eagle had been drinking heavily in the bar before the raid began. Two of the cops are said to have downed “shot after shot of Jagermeister,” including rounds bought for them by the bartender.

Three undercover officers were already in the Atlanta Eagle bar before the Sept. 10, 2009, raid started. At least two of them were drinking heavily, according to the bartender and the receipts they filed for the costs of their drinks. According to information gathered in the now-settled lawsuit, officer Bennie Bridges spent $60 of APD funds on May 21, 2009, and another $50 the night of the raid on Sept. 10, 2009. A second officer working undercover that evening, Jared Watkins, claimed $60 for drinks the night of the raid. The third officer inside the Eagle bar before the raid claimed he spent $10. According to records for those who were in the bar undercover on May 21, 2009, five officers, one of them a woman, each claimed they spent $5. Three others reported spending $10, $20 and $29. That was the night Bridges, the lead investigator, spent $60, according to information gathered to settle a federal lawsuit for $1.025 million and legal costs.

Spending $60 sounds like about eight or ten drinks, far far too many just to maintain the guise of being a customer. On the night of the raid, Eagle patrons and staffers said that officers threw them roughly to the filthy bar floor and then made mocking anti-gay slurs. The fictitious charges for public sex and drug possession were dismissed against most of those arrested, the others were found not guilty. And now they all get to split a million dollars of city money.