Friday, May 7th, 2010
Video of a SWAT narcotics raid in Columbia, Missouri has gone viral on the internet after officers stormed into a house, shooting one family pet dog and killing another in front of a small child, only to discover an insignificantly small amount of marijuana.
The incident provides a compelling example of how the phony war on drugs in America operates.
The raid occurred in February, but the footage has only recently come to light as the case has been ongoing.
The video shows heavily armed officers forcibly entering the home of 25 year old Jonathan E. Whitworth and his wife and 7-year-old son.
Police are said to have received “intelligence from two informants that claimed Whitworth had a large amount of high-grade marijuana at his residence.”
The footage reveals that a shot is immediately fired by the officers upon entry to the house. According to a report in the Columbia Daily Tribune, this shot was not thought to have wounded either of the two dogs, one corgi and one pit bull.
A further report in the Tribune somewhat contradicts this explanation, as it outlines the incident as described by the Columbia Police Chief Ken Burton:
Three officers shot at the pit bull, and the first missed completely, which is when the corgi is believed to have been shot in the paw, he said. The pit bull acted aggressively toward a SWAT member again as they pushed into the home, which resulted in the animal being shot, he said. After being shot, it moved to attack a SWAT member, which is when the dog was killed.
The police chief did not indicate any regret for sending an armed SWAT team into a family home and shooting up the dogs, rather he indicated that the warrant to search the home was executed too late to catch Whitworth with more marijuana.
“It was not a mistake to shoot the pit bull,” Burton said. “I wouldn’t be standing here if an officer had been bitten by a pit bull instead of the reverse happening.”
The raw footage follows this analysis of the incident by Alex Jones in which he explains how it is a centerpiece of the government’s phony war on drugs. Alex explains how the CIA and other agencies of government have admittedly carried out narcotrafficking operations for decades. This is especially true in Afghanistan, where troops guard opium crops, and the fight against the Taliban and al qaeda is mired in drug trafficking.
Whitworth pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of possession of drug paraphernalia. This was in exchange for dropping charges of misdemeanor marijuana possession and second-degree child endangerment. Casual pot smoking constitutes child endangerment, bursting into homes and firing automatic weapons is apparently a valid solution to this problem.
- A d v e r t i s e m e n t
An internal review is scheduled for completion in two weeks. Whitworth and his family are reportedly considering a civil action against the department.
Reaction to the incident and the video has been heated. The Columbia Police Department has been bombarded with phone calls and e-mails following what it has described as a “widespread misinformation campaign” on internet message boards and blogs. The department also says it has received a direct death threat toward Columbia police officers.
This is not an isolated incident. According to research by the CATO institute, paramilitary police forces are conducting up to 40,000 forced, unannounced raids every year on nonviolent drug offenders, bystanders, and wrongly targeted civilians.
While militarized police are trained to aggressively crush any notion that marijuana use is tolerable, federal government agencies, aided and abetted by giant offshore financial corporations, are shipping in the majority of hard narcotics into the U.S.
These controlling powers are working to keep marijuana illegal as a pretext create artificial scarcity and jack up their profits, as well as to pack privately owned and run prisons with non violent offenders.
Hat tip: Norml Blog