Police swarm home after two contractors mistaken for crooks - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Henrico Police swarm home after two contractors mistaken for crooks

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A local family is raising concerns about what they call excessive force from Henrico Police. Two contractors were mistaken for crooks breaking into a vacant Princess Road house. Some are now calling the police response into question.

"I've been kind of scared being a woman living here," said Elizabeth Albertis. "It kind of frightened me a little bit."

Elizabeth will never forget police converging on a home right across the street from her property.

"They had like armor," said Elizabeth. "They were carrying all kinds of stuff. It was kind of scary. I thought maybe there were people in there with a gun or something."

No. Rashad Coleman and his partner were inside the home. They maintain foreclosed properties for banks. A neighbor allegedly called police saying two black men were breaking in the home.

"I was just doing my job. I don't understand that," said Rashad Coleman. "I didn't have a hat on. My face was showing. I even spoke to some of the neighbors. I was not breaking into nobody's house."

Coleman says he exited the home to find it surrounded by police.

"We've never seen this type of response from the police," said Sheila Coleman who is Rashad's wife and business partner.

Sheila says her father was a Richmond Police officer.

"That's a dangerous job," said Sheila. "I definitely get it, but I also feel like you have to build trust. Do the police always have to respond with aggression and excessiveness?"

Coleman admits he has been forever changed by the experience.

"I felt scared. I'm watching the news. I'm seeing things going on in Missouri," said Coleman. "I thought they were going to harm me."

He says he's just happy he had the work order to show police.

"I'm scared to even go back to work," said Coleman. "I'm scared to even do my job now."

A Henrico Police spokeswoman released the following statement:

"It is common practice for several officers to respond to a possible B & E in progress. Several officers responded (no SWAT team) and discovered contractors were working on the house. No arrest was made."

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