More than two dozen Chicago cops burst into a basement apartment with guns drawn, terrifying and trashing a 4-year-old's birthday party, according to a federal lawsuit.
Mother Stephanie Bures said plainclothes officers burst into her home and pointed weapons at the faces of her children: T.J., who was turning 4, and 7-year-old Samari. While shouting and cursing at the 15 people gathered for T.J.'s birthday, the officers smashed his chocolate cake and poured peroxide on his presents, the lawsuit says.
Many officers refused to give their names or badge numbers and screamed obscenities and insults at family members, according to the suit.
Bures said police had the wrong address and were looking for a man who moved from the building five years ago.
"Hysterical, the children were terrified that they and their families were going to be shot," said a press release from the family's lawyer, Al Hofeld Jr. No arrests were made in the February incident.
Police also "unlawfully questioned" the two children without their parents and "joked and laughed" while tearing apart the home, according to the suit.
"They were saying F-words and stuff," Samari told CBS Chicago. "It was horrible."
The child said, "I thought they was going to shoot me, and my brother and everybody else."
The Bures family's lawsuit is the fourth filed against Chicago police by Hofeld.
“There is a silent epidemic of trauma being perpetrated upon the children and families of the south and west sides of our city by Chicago police barreling into the wrong homes, handcuffing innocent adults, holding guns on children, trashing their homes, refusing to show warrants, and screaming dehumanizing commands,” the attorney said in a statement.
The Bures children now experience nightmares and are terrified of police, the lawsuit alleges.
Chicago Police, in a statement sent to InsideEdition.com, said: "While we do not comment on pending or proposed litigation, for all criminal investigations, CPD makes every effort to ensure the validity and accuracy of all information that is used to apply for and execute search warrants. Oftentimes this information comes from community sources and despite the vetting of material through a criminal court and the methodical process to authenticate addresses, errors can occur and we take them very seriously."