Civil Liberties

Unarmed, Shirtless Man Killed by Florida Cop in Pot Raid


Last November, 57 percent of voters in Florida voted to legalize pot for medical use (though the measure required 60 percent and failed).

Earlier this week, a Volusia County, Florida, SWAT team who found contraband amounts of that almost-legally-a-medicine raided a home at 6:30 in the morning and shot and killed 26-year-old Derek Cruice, for "advancing" on the deputy, according to police.

"Cruice's actions caused the deputy to perceive a threat," said the sheriff's department in an official statement.

Roommates wonder whether the shooting was justified, as summed up by Huffington Post:

One of the men inside the home, 24-year-old Matthew Grady, contradicted deputies' claims that Cruice had resisted arrest.

"There's a couple of seconds between opening the door, walking out, getting to my knee and halfway out there's gunfire," Grady told My News 13. "I look back as the guy's grabbing me, and my friend is dead or dying."

When asked if Cruice resisted, Grady said: "No."

Roommate Steven Cochran said Cruice wasn't wearing a shirt at the time of the shooting, and didn't pose a threat of carrying a concealed weapon.

"It's kind of hard to conceal anything or hide anything when this is all you have on," said Cochran. "They entered the house and fired."

Neighbors report that the dead Cruice and his pals used to play warrior games with foam weapons in the yard; he was a fan of Dagorhir role playing battle games.

The shooter, 10-year veteran Todd Raible, is on, wait for it, administrative leave.

Police claim to have found 217 grams of pot in the residence.