LAKEWOOD, Wash. -- One look at Dan Neary’s property and you know something’s not right. The garage door is off its hinges, all the windows are broken and the back gate is lying on its side. For this Army veteran, it’s like a flashback to his time at war.
“This is kind of like an assault I would do in Afghanistan or Iraq,” said Neary.
But this wasn't in the Middle East. The damage was caused by the City of Lakewood's SWAT team. They were looking for Duane Samms. All Neary knew was that he was renting his property to a single woman. Later, she told him her husband was moving in. That man was Samms and he’s wanted for felony domestic assault.
“I had no idea until Tuesday or Wednesday when I was contacted by Lakewood PD that they were looking for this guy,” explained Neary.
That was cool to Neary because he had evicted the couple earlier in the month. He quickly agreed to meet the police to open the doors and let them search the home, but the SWAT team decided to move in two hours early.
“I was devastated. I could not believe that just happened. I was like, are you kidding me? Because there's all kinds of places where you can watch this residence and see if anyone is coming or going,” explained Neary.
Neary spoke to his insurance company about the damage done to his home. He was told that he has to pay a $500 deductible. It's like he's the one paying a fine.
“Yea, it left me hanging. They left me and my family hanging,” said Neary. “I just don't exactly have 500 bucks sitting around to pay for a deductible.”
Michael Zaro, the assistant chief of police in Lakewood, said the SWAT team decided not to take any chances about Samms’ whereabouts.
“The potential that there was this person there that has a violent history, had committed this violent assault, and our number one objective is for everyone to go home safe,” explained Zaro.
I told Zaro about Neary's financial situation and wondered if the department could help him out with his deductible.
“I happened to run into Mr. Neary earlier at City Hall and talked to him at length and he seems to be understanding. He just wants help with this process and we're happy to work with him,” said Zaro.
Zaro said he will help get Neary his deductible. That’s news this war veteran is happy to hear especially since he’s already paid a price for his country. He shouldn’t have to shell out for this too.