Las Vegas police are in our hall of shame this week for shooting an unarmed man in his home over a little bit of weed. A 21 year old man named Trevon Cole was fatally shot by Las Vegas police in his apartment while he was attempting to flush some marijuana down the toilet. The complaint says that members of the SWAT team spent the day drinking before engaging in the raid.
The raid and arrest had been authorized because over the period of a month he sold 1.8 ounces of weed to an undercover officer. Even if this was high quality medical marijuana, with a retail price of over $400 ounce, the total revenue from this crime could have been no more than $1,000. The profit? Even less.
In other words, the LVPD killed this unarmed man for nothing. He was not a high level drug trafficker selling poison to children. He was a 21 year old to children. He was a 21 year old kid, plain and simple. Is this the kind of death they are warning drugs lead to in DARE? Being murdered by an armed band of fifteen power hungry, over-funded men with AR-15s?
The use of these SWAT teams has long been justified due to the â€œdangerous natureâ€ of their job dealing with â€œviolent felonsâ€. That justification doesnâ€™t mesh well with things like SWAT ridealongs for celebrities like Matt Damon, Steven Seagal, and Shaq. If these raids are so incredibly dangerous that they require 15 armed men with extensive training, why would be putting innocent well known people in harmâ€™s way?