A Capitol Hill family won a lawsuit against the D.C. government after their row house was raided in a search for evidence that their renovation plans violated the city's historic preservation laws.
About a dozen police officers and D.C. Consumer and Regulatory Affairs inspectors searched the home of Laura Elkins and John Robbins four years ago, entering the bedrooms of their teenage children who were home sick from school, and searching through drawers, behind furniture and under carpets.
The parents were raising and repairing the roof of their home. A neighbor's complaint that the renovation was out of character with the rest of the neighborhood led to the raid.
Last week, Judge Rosemary M. Collyer, of the U.S. District for the District of Columbia, ruled that the raid was an "unreasonable search and seizure" that violated the family's constitutional rights to privacy.