SOUTH FULTON, Ga. — A former Marine and federal officer told Channel 2 Action News police raided his legal CBD store and home nearly two years ago, and they still haven’t returned everything they took, even though a judge dismissed the case.
“Police, they were pointing guns at the kids,” Jaqueline Joyce Cloutier told Channel 2 investigative reporter Nicole Carr about the July 2019 raid on her Douglasville home. “I was like shaking and crying because everybody was so terrified,” she continued.
Cloutier said she had no clue what was happening as dozens of officers surrounded and entered her home, until they finally told her, “Your husband is Marc Cloutier? You know he’s selling drugs? He’s a big-time.”
Officers left behind a mess in their home, including their young children’s bedrooms. Police seized two of their cars and much more.
“They took cash from my house. They took my guns. They took my badges,” said Marc Cloutier.
Police also raided Mr. Cloutier’s CBD shop on Old National Highway in the City of South Fulton. Channel 2 reported on the raid at the time: “When the City of South Fulton Police, ATF and the FBI raided the stores on Wednesday, investigators found numerous guns and drugs,” said Channel 2′s Tyisha Fernandes on July 31, 2019.
Mr. Cloutier spent three nights in the Fulton County Jail in a medical unit, because he is a former federal law enforcement.
“Up with murderers and rapists, you know, and for something you know, that I haven’t done,” he said.
According to court documents, City of South Fulton police made three undercover drug buys. They charged Mr. Cloutier and an employee with three counts of selling marijuana.
- Cobb County schools lifts mask mandate for those fully vaccinated
- Coronavirus: CDC eases mask-wearing guidance for fully vaccinated Americans
- Georgia to discontinue extra $300 federal unemployment benefits next month
Mr. Cloutier said he only sells legal CBD and has proof.
“And that’s what we sold at my store is legal CBD and I had all the paperwork for that,” he said. He took the paperwork proving it was CBD from an independent laboratory to court.
A judge dismissed the case against Mr. Cloutier and his employee, but police told him this wasn’t over.
“And I’m like well it was dismissed by a judge, and they’re like ‘No. We’re gonna re-indict you because we know this is marijuana,’” said Mr. Cloutier.
Police returned the couple’s cars, but almost two years later, they still have not returned or lost some of Mr. Cloutier’s badges, guns, cash and store surveillance video.
The Cloutiers’ attorney asked to see the officers’ audio and video recordings of the undercover buys.
“If he actually told you that this was marijuana, that this was something that was illegal, something is wrong about his, then I’m gone,” said the Cloutiers’ attorney Mark Bullman.
But he said police refused, telling him the case is still open.
Channel 2 Action News filed an open records request for the video of the raids on the house and shop that the city denied, stating it is “pending investigation.”
Bullman said police never even tested the so-called drugs until months later, after Mr. Cloutier’s arrest, when they did a field drug test.
“There is no scientific way that it can be tested to determine whether or not it’s CBD or not,” said Bullman.
He said police told him they’re going to send the evidence off for testing.
“Probably to the GBI. Well, I reached out to the GBI and the GBI says we won’t test that small an alleged substance,” said Bullman.
The Cloutiers filed a lawsuit against the City of South Fulton.
The city sent us this statement, saying: “As there is pending litigation involved in this case, the City of South Fulton is unable to comment at this time.”
“It was total injustice that was done to us,” said Mr. Cloutier. “And we need to be made whole,” he continued.
Cox Media Group