Houston police are throwing the book at two of their officers who were caught lying about having an informant during a drug raid that left two people dead and five fellow law enforcement officials injured.
On Friday, prosecutors announced that ex-cop Gerald Goines was charged with murder for the deadly Jan. 28 drug raid that left Rhogena Nicholas, 58, and 59-year-old Dennis Tuttle, 59, dead.
Goines, who was shot in the gunfight, was charged with two counts of felony murder and was accused of lying in a search warrant about having a confidential informant who brought heroin at the home. According to the Associated Press, the couple’s family members and friends dismissed allegations that they sold drugs—even though police found small amounts of marijuana and cocaine in the home.
Family and friends of Tuttle and Nicholas have continuously dismissed allegations that the couple sold drugs. Goines did acknowledge there was no informant and that he bought the drugs himself, authorities said.
Another ex-officer, Steven Bryant, was caught in the web of deception, too. For supporting his brethren’s bogus story about the confidential informant, he was charged with tampering with a government record for allegedly providing false information in a report after the deadly raid.
“We recognize that the community has been violated and I want to assure my fellow Houstonians and other residents of Harris County that we are getting to the truth,” Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg said at a news conference on Friday. “Each day we uncover more and with each fact, we work toward doing justice.”
Both officers, who were relieved of their duties after the raid, surrendered to authorities and appeared at a bond hearing on Friday.
Ogg apologized to the couple’s families.
“We are a department that will vigorously pursue the rule of law, including holding our officers accountable as we did here,” Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said at a separate news conference on Friday.
Acevedo said he believes the officers who entered the home were also victims as they were led astray by the actions of two officers who “dishonored the badge.”