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Video: Cops Play Wii Bowling During Drug Raid

(Tampa Tribune)
NEW YORK (CBS) Pinheads! That's what some people are thinking after a security camera caught undercover drug investigators from central Florida playing Wii bowling during a nine-hour drug raid.

In March, police stormed the Lakeland home of convicted drug dealer Michael Difalco with guns drawn and flashlights at the ready. But searching for drugs is hard work and what the crack squad of officers thought they really needed was an invigorating game of bowling.

Fortunately Difalco had a Nintendo Wii and a big screen TV at the ready!


Turns out Difalco also put up a wireless camera that he connected to his computer, which caught all the "investigative" hijinks.

As some of the more diligent officers searched the residence for illegal drugs and other illicit items, a couple of Florida's finest began bowling frame after frame - all within 20 minutes of entering the suspect's house.

In the video, one female detective can be seen going through evidence one moment and throwing strikes and gutter balls the next. She even jumped up and down when she threw a double!

And she is not the only one.

The High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) Task Force, which conducted the raid, says its mission is to reduce drug trafficking in the most critical areas of the country, thereby reducing its impact in other areas. It is not clear how video games became involved in the mission.

Law enforcement officials from Polk County Sheriff's Office and police departments from Auburndale, Lakeland and Winter Haven participated in the raid.

"Certainly this was a case of bad judgment," Auburndale Police Chief Nolan McLeod said to The Tampa Tribune. "We will handle it appropriately."

"If there is any indication that someone did something inappropriately, we will do something about it," Winter Haven police Sgt. Brad Coleman said to the paper.

But will the virtual bowling tournament affect the case against Difalco?

Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd doesn't think so. "That absolutely is not true; that doesn't invalidate the search at all," Judd told the Tribune.

Police say they found marijuana, meth, weapons, drug paraphernalia and over $30,000 of stolen property during the March raid. Difalco's arrest record dates back to at least 1995 and he has already spent three years in prison.

It doesn't look like he is going anywhere fast.

What do you think? Does the bowling tourney invalidate the case against Difalco? Or was it all in good fun?