HTTP/1.0 200 OK Content-Type: text/html Resident Shaken by Police Raid
Pubdate: Tue, 15 Apr 2008
Source: Oakville Beaver (CN ON)
Copyright: 2008, Oakville Beaver
Author: Angela Blackburn
Bookmark: (Drug Raids)


Oakville landscaper Brock Morris was left shaken and shaking his head
after the Halton police raided his home at gunpoint, Friday, in search
of a marijuana grow house operation.

The police walked away empty handed from the raid, leaving Morris and
his family bewildered and shaken.

"They had automatic rifles, with red lights on them, pointed at my
head," said an upset Morris, who, now that the shock of the police
raid on his Royal Windsor Drive house has worn off, is questioning
what happened.

The resident of 2380 Royal Windsor Dr., who operates Brock's
Landscaping and Lawn Maintenance, also on Royal Windsor Drive, said
Halton drug officers "busted in like gangbusters" around 5:30 p.m.
last Friday.

The raid turned up nothing.

After it was over, Morris said police produced a search warrant
indicating they expected he would be charged with production of
marijuana and possession of marijuana for the purpose of

"It would appear, quite frankly, that we had information that would
lead us to get a search warrant and upon entering, I guess we didn't
find what had been alleged would be inside," said Halton police public
affairs Sgt. Brian Carr Monday.

"We had reliable information that would lead us to obtain a search
warrant. You're not going to get a search warrant without some
concrete information. Something's gone wrong in this instance," said
Carr. "This is a very rare occurrence."

The raid shocked Morris.

"They told me to put my hands up, look to the heavens, Brock, then
walk forward," recounted Morris, 48, of how the raid began.

First, officers handcuffed his co-worker, Wayne Dickinson, then
himself and told him he was under arrest for marijuana possession and
drug trafficking, according to Morris who said armed officers were
surrounding him from all directions on the property.

"I don't even have a record of anything like that," said the resident,
who came to Ontario from Montreal in the 1970s, lived in Mississauga's
Credit Woodlands area and moved to Oakville nearly six years ago.

He has, however, operated his landscape business in this area for
about 20 years.

Morris, who said a dozen or more tactical officers, many of them
armed, swarmed his house, threatened to shoot his guard dogs and led
his girlfriend and her two children out of the house with arms over
their heads.

"I have a (German) shepherd and a bull mastiff and they can be
intimidating, but they don't have a right to say they're going to
shoot them," said Morris of the three large guard dogs he said he
rescued from bad circumstances, has penned beside his home and owns
for security purposes.

"The guns were drawn only because of the dogs, not because anyone was
in fear of anybody in the house, only because of the dogs," said Carr.

After a search of the residence, Morris said police assembled in his
living room and handed him a search warrant.

"I sat here," he explained, sitting on the arm of a sofa, and
extending his arms to show how officers had filled his living room
after their raid came up empty.

He said no one apologized.

Morris said he was so shaken, he even found himself blurting an offer
to take landscaping quotes.

While Morris said he would have shown officers around his house,
police must follow prescribed protocols and policies in the course of
their duties.

Carr said police experience has proved that drug dealers and violence
go hand in hand.

"It's a lot easier to put the guns away. We always go in prepared for
the worst and hope for the best," said Carr.

Morris who, on Monday, was calling the officer whose name is on the
search warrant, and his superior, wanting answers, was to discuss the
issue with the division's staff sergeant as of press deadlines yesterday.

Morris said he has not yet filed an official complaint. That will
depend upon the answers he receives.

"We're the first to make apologies if we've done anything wrong," said
Carr. "We can't apologize enough if we've done something wrong, but we
do act on information believed to be reliable."

The fact that police turned up nothing "would indicate we got some bad
information," said Carr.

"We're human," said Carr, adding if police can prove that someone
misled them in the investigation, they would consider a mischief charge.

Morris is now dealing with the fallout of the very public

The landscaper said he was at the local coffee shop after the incident
and people who know him were asking him if he needed bail money.

Morris believes undercover police parked in a business parking lot
across the road for two days before raiding his house.

According to Morris, an employee of the business across the road
called Morris to ask if he knew about the police presence. Thirty
seconds later Morris said the police were descending on his house.

"I have no track record as far as trafficking, or police record of
anything, really," said Morris.

He admitted to stealing gas to take a girlfriend to Wasaga Beach when
he was 18 and a previous impaired driving charge.

"I'm 48 now," he said.

Morris, conducting a tour of his house, described his lifestyle.
"We're really a farm family."

He noted clear, not opaque, plastic is taped across windows of the
house to block drafts because the house was constructed circa 1957.

Some wiring taped to a wall and along a ceiling is for his kids to use
the computer and play computer games, he said.

His hydro bills may have been higher this past winter because his
co-worker, Dickinson, has been living in a trailer behind the house,
he said.

And the guard dogs, he rescued from unpleasant circumstances, and are
on hand because of break-ins.

Plucking a colourful sheet from a side window of the home, Morris said
the sheet is not there to hide anything inside, but offers his son and
daughter privacy in their bedrooms from the industrial/commercial
business next door where, on Monday, a transport truck sat parked not
far from the window.

Morris said running a business is not easy, finances are often a
struggle and his home reflects a very simple lifestyle.

His house has a front yard laden with construction equipment related
to his business, as well as a barbecue and planters.

Down a long, dirt driveway, sits the trailer Dickinson lives in and
the pen in which the guard dogs are kept.

A side door offers a quick route to the basement where Morris' bedroom
is located.

Upstairs are the simply-furnished bedrooms of his girlfriend Chris
Tapping's 15-year-old son and 14-year-old daughter.

On the main floor, the kitchen is next to the living room, which
houses computer equipment, a couch and other furniture, while off to
the side is a parlour-type room in which there is a sofa that Morris
calls his "office," and which sits opposite a large-screen TV and a

"I support the community," he said, noting he sponsors his kids'
soccer team, has at least two World Vision adoptees and even helped
when HGTV built a fountain at Toronto's Casey House several years ago.

"I'm very proud of it," said Morris, then admitting, "I'm not

Morris said the raid Friday not only saw rush hour commuters along
Royal Windsor Drive craning their necks, but left many neighbours
asking questions.

He, too, has questions.

"I'd like to know why they ended up here and why they came to my house
and did what they did," he said.

Police and Morris continue to discuss the issue. 
- ---
MAP posted-by: Richard Lake