The Free Thought Project By Justin Gardner Posted Thurs., Sept.01, 2016
Another life was taken by cops in the senseless war on drugs, this time an unarmed man sitting in a bedroom with two grams of weed.
A military-style raid took place at the home of Levonia Riggins, 22, by a SWAT team looking for “illegal narcotics.” Riggins, who had previously been arrested for cannabis possession with intent to sell, was subject to a month-long “drug investigation” before being gunned down in his home.
Authorities thought they needed to use the military-clad, violence-prone SWAT team on Riggins due to his previous arrests and “reports that he had guns.” The most dangerous thing about having cannabis is the possibility that cops could kill you, as Riggins’ case unfortunately proved.
Neighbors described him with admiration.
“He was always a good person,” said family friend Carol Jane Scott. “Yeah, he smokes his weed and stuff, but he was never into anything serious. He was very kind, always wanting to talk to people, always there for you.”
But Tampa cops believed Riggins was a menace to society and must be locked in a cage for possessing a plant. One deputy was so afraid of this unarmed pot smoker that he could do nothing but resort immediately to deadly force.
Deputy Johnson is on paid leave while the Hillsborough State Attorney’s Office investigates.
While it is unlikely Johnson will face any repercussions for his actions, the sad reality is that military-style SWAT raids, brimming with volatility, are commonly used for drug raids.
In fact, most SWAT raids are conducted for drug searches, even though SWAT’s original purpose was for responding to “hostage, barricade, or active shooter scenarios.”
But cops need to find excuses to use their military tactics and fancy assault gear, and the drug war is fertile ground. The ACLU report also notes that “…incident reports for search warrant executions, especially in drug investigations, often contained no information about why the SWAT team was being sent in, other than to note that the warrant was “high risk,” or else provided otherwise unsubstantiated information such as “suspect is believed to be armed.”
The Free Thought Project has documented numerous examples of killings, mayhem, and terror wrought upon innocent people by SWAT teams. Just over two years ago, another man was killed in his own home during a SWAT raid over $2 worth of pot.
SWAT teams are set up to create violence and confrontation, and Riggins was the latest victim.
Full article here: http://thefreethoughtproject.com/swat-team-raid-kills-man-two-grams-pot/