Amir Locke’s Death Should Incense Anyone Who Cares About Gun Rights

A Minneapolis Police Department SWAT officer shot and killed an unarmed 22-year old man during a raid. This rekindled the debate about a law enforcement tactic many feel is susceptible to abuse.

Amir Locke was the victim. He appeared to have fallen asleep on the sofa that morning. NotThat warrant included the following names: In a matter of about three seconds, body camera footage shows the man—buried under a thick white blanket—stirring to the sound of the cops’ entry with his hand on the barrel of a firearm. The officer Mark Hanneman shoots the man three more times.

Amelia Huffman, interim chief of Minneapolis Police said Locke was shot by Hanneman because Locke pointed the gun in “the direction of officers”. However, the video released by the government seems to support that claim. Locke had his gun pointed towards the side. His hand was actually on the barrel, not the trigger.

According to the legal representation of his family, he legally owned the gun and held a concealed carry permit. “My son was executed…and now his dreams have been destroyed,” said Locke’s mother, Karen Wells, at a press conference Friday. Attorney Ben Crump said, “They didn’t even give him any chance.”

Locke’s passing will likely draw more attention to no-knock raids. These have been criticized in the past for having unintended consequences. The St. Paul Police Department asked that the SWAT teams use a knock and announce warrant. However, Minneapolis police officers countered, saying they will only proceed with a noknock raid.

Breonna Taylor’s March 2020 death prompted a lot discussion over police tactics. The 26-year old woman was killed when Louisville Police opened fire on her as she attempted to raid her boyfriend’s home for drugs. However, tTaylor’s and Locke have many commonalities, including the fact that he conducted the raid. Taylor’s partner Kenneth Walker jumped out of the bed and retrieved a gun. He fired one shot when he heard someone breaking into Taylor’s home. The man claimed that he was convinced it was her ex boyfriend who broke into Taylor’s apartment. Taylor was lying in her bed when the police arrived and shot Taylor five more times. Walker was later charged with attempted murder. However, the charges were dropped in May 2020.

Walker was also issued a permit to carry.

Taylor’s story was widely covered in media. This story didn’t make the news: Andrew Coffee IV, a Florida resident, was recently found not guilty of killing his 21-year old girlfriend Alteria. But no one—including the state—posited that he’d shot Woods. Indian River County Sheriff’s Office officers shot her ten times in a raid on Coffee IV’s home. After cops placed a flash bang grenade in his bedroom and broke his window, Coffee IV fired back. He was charged with attempted murder of law enforcement officers and felony murder Woods. This is a controversial ruling that permits the government to accuse someone of a homicide it didn’t commit if they occurred during an associated offense.

The defense said that he thought the cops to intruders. He shot them in self-defense. That argument eventually convinced the jury.

Locke’s story should be troubling to anyone who believes in the right of firearm ownership. Second Amendment doesn’t discriminate. It also does not evaporate when the government is present, especially considering that its Founding intent was to safeguard against a dictatorial state.

National Rifle Association (NRA), which is the largest gun advocacy group in the country, has yet not made any statement regarding the killing. They have been through this before. Take Philando Castile. In 2016, he was fatally shot by Jeronimo Yanez from St. Anthony Police Department. Castile calmly said he had a firearm inside the car. St. Anthony, a Minneapolis suburb is located five minutes from the Mississippi River.

The NRA did not speak out for a time until August 2017. Dana Loesch, then the NRA’s spokesperson, stated that Castile was carrying marijuana at the moment of Castile’s death. No NRA spokesperson responded as of the writing. ReasonPlease send a request to comment.