SWAT team shows off new tactic in Centralia raid

by: Richard Thompson, KIRO 7 South Sound Bureau Chief Updated:


CENTRALIA, Washington - A SWAT team raided a Centralia home Thursday as part of a new effort to keep officers safe on the job.

The team was called in to help protect officers who spearheaded the raid, which was aimed at a man wanted on a drug warrant.

First, the team created a distraction by firing a flash-bang grenade into the house. Then, an officer swung a battering ram twice at a door. In just 12 seconds, the team was in the building.

Two men were found inside and detained for questioning.

A Centralia police dog was then sent in to see if anyone else was hiding in the house.

“This is the police! The building is being searched by a police dog at this time. If you come out right now, you won’t get hurt,” one officer yelled before releasing the dog into the house.

As the dog searched, the SWAT commander said that in a raid like this where the suspects are known to have used methamphetamine, officers can’t take any chances.

“These people have weapons, they are at times under the influence of methamphetamine – who knows what they are capable of doing,” Sgt. Rob Snaza with the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office said.

No one was found hiding in the home, but police did find drugs.

“We did find methamphetamine and marijuana here at the residence,” said Gene Seiber, the chief criminal deputy.