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Photo found of suspected shooter dressed as terrorist

Published: Monday, Jan. 9 2012 5:27 p.m. MST

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Economist
Salt Lake City, UT

Okay, let me get this straight...

A super militarized Narcotics Strike Force Team is assembled to serve a Search Warrant on a marijuana smoker who works as Wal-Mart in the middle of the night. The operation turns into a botched raid with 6 wounded (several in the hip) and 1 dead while capturing the suspect in the Shed located in the back of the property.

Several Days Later (a week even), the police detonate an unknown explosive material that they are "uncomfortable in moving", not a "bomb"(as per SL Trib). And, all of this happens in the backdrop of articles lavishing praise on the militarization of our police force and the tactics used on all suspects without regard to strategy or threat level.

So to sum this up, a botched search warrant operation somehow morphs into a glorified tragedy in the wake of capturing an insurgent. Yet, the original scope of the warrant or the affidavit has not been released. If this isn't spin, then I honestly don't know what is...

Goet
Ogden, UT

I have cupboards of bomb making material.

Caps, black powder, bleach, ammonia, fertilizer, gasoline, pipes, duct tape, wire, batteries, timers.

Are they coming for me, too?

DeltaFoxtrot
West Valley, UT

@Economist & Goet: You said it. This is just the govt. spin doctors at work. They *should* have known better than to go after this guy, a decorated vet. and trained marksman, in the matter that they did.

All for a couple of pot plants.

What a waste.

Rifleman
Salt Lake City, Utah

Re: Goet | 1:14 p.m. Jan. 9, 2012
"Are they coming for me, too?"

All depends. Do you store your powder in a pipe with a fuse and caps on both ends?

ouisc
Farmington, UT

I think some of y'all are rushing to a quick judgement. The police really aren't pursuing too many petty cases of pot. The folks I know who have been caught with petty amounts of marijuana get off with not much more than a fine in addition to possibly a warning from their employer. I would suspect this perp is in a lot more trouble than growing a few plants.

The police had to arrive to the home, as their warrant was a search warrant. They can't hardly search the home if they arrived to Wal-Mart. The police knew who the perp was when they arrived, which is why they had reinforcements with them. But nobody would have predicted the perp was capable of barracading himself in and shooting policemen and after policemen in the head, ambush style, even if they were assisting their wounded.

The perp deserves a trial, and it is warranted to pursue the death penalty. I applaud the police for not killing the perp during the ambush.

tabuno
Clearfield, UT

I've been taught that before a person attempts to save another person, that one must secure the scene or risk becoming a victim themselves and thus elevating the likelihood that more people will be seriously injured or killed. I hope that wasn't the case here because, if so, then some these trained officers actually could be held, in part, responsible for what happened or at least the training they received might be suspect. Or maybe the lesson I was taught was wrong?

Midvaliean
MIDVALE, UT

cultivation of marijuana... growing a plant. A plant with healing properties. Priorities are way off here.

So. Cal Reader
San Diego, CA

"This is a massive investigation." You think? Then why not keep your mouth closed. The defendant is in custody. He's not going to harm the public any further. Public safety is not a risk. So, why the details now?

"It appears to be a recent photo, based on his current beard size, and it depicted an individual dressed as a terrorist with some kind of bomb device."

And this fact is relevant to the public because why?

I've worked in the Criminal Justice field for over 20+ years so I understand the slant of prosecutorial offices, but this "press conference" seems to go a little far.

My heart goes out to Officer Francom, the officers who were wounded and all of their families.

But, Re: Economist-- you raise some very valid observations.

bslack
Draper, UT

tabuno, really, in all your experience you make this comment. If possible, I am sure the officers are trained to secure the scene before approaching wounded individuals; however, the officers are also trained to try and pull a fallen officer to safety to avoid further injuries. The best laid out plans are always subject to error based upon how the criminal reacts. Obviously, Stewart decided to make it a shoot-out and an officer was killed while others were injured. Spin Doctors or perhaps waiting for more details until the true picture comes to light.

Hemlock
Salt Lake City, UT

"...a plant with healing qualities." ? Learn some pharmacology.

mtmanmc
Colorado Springs, CO

This case is getting stranger by the day. Details that belong in a Court of Law are being share with the public by the news media. What kind of fair trial will this man receive in the State of Utah? More and more details keep being release each day. It's sounding more like a police cover up for there engagement. A search warrant can be served anywhere on the person listed on that warrant. From the photo of the Veteran, I can tell he was an expert with weapons. I wonder how many daily fire fights he was involve with while in the service. I see many error costing the lost of life and wounded police officers. Why is Weber County trying this case in the news media?

Moderate
Salt Lake City, UT

What does a terrorist look like? Timothy McVeigh? Mark Hoffman?

tabuno
Clearfield, UT

bslack - I appreciate the observation about trying to save the injured, but where is the sense of getting injured and then one person getting injured and then another getting injured... Perhaps the focus should have been on making sure that more people weren't injured first by focusing on again securing the sense and providing at least enough oover power first, at least smoke or something - even bullet proof shields. I've been taught that in any dangerous scene that one must make sure that it's as safe as possible. Like if there's a downed power line, one must make sure that it's safe, unless there is imminent threat which there may have been, but then the number of injured seems so high it suggestive that something may have gone wrong. I can understand, two or three, but not six people injured or killed. That's about half of those who were in the first strike force, a 50% casualty rate! That's almost what happened when in the Civil War when they lined up in columns and faced the front in ranks.

NeilT
Clearfield, UT

An awful lot of people rushing to judgement here. Anybody can be an armchair quarterback. Obviously this guy was loaded for bear. How are the police supposed to know that. My educated opinion is that he opened fire with an automatic weapon. I will leave it that.

Goet
Ogden, UT

Jury nullification anyone?

Schwa
South Jordan, UT

I think we really need to re-evaluate the "war on drugs." We've been fighting both sides of this war for too long, and it costs our country both in financial as well as human terms.

raybies
Layton, UT

This is not a time to "reevaluate" anything. It's a tragedy that a dangerous fiend didn't have the sense to stop shooting. There's no sympathy for a guy like this.

IT IS NEVER OKAY TO SHOOT A COP.

Let alone, cops that are trying to help their fallen comrades.

There's a family without a dad in our community tonight, kids going to bed tonight missing him. They serve and protect our neighborhoods and deserve better.

This drug-addled nonsense about legalizing drugs only gives the nutjobs the mental nudge to mindlessly pull the trigger the next time.

Doug10
Roosevelt, UT

The entire episode is so sad.

This shooter had been busted twice before, once for no seat belt and another time for no insurance. Those facts may be more pertinent in this article than 600lbs of meth and 2000 lbs of pot found last year, which has no bearing at all on this case.

Nobody knows for sure how they would react if people come busting through your door after dark, but if you have been trained in the military chances are you will be armed and supposedly in this country you are allowed to defend yourself and abode.

Trajic on both sides of the story, but it is sad to see how the police are trying to cover themselves now. If there are more than 100 bullet holes think how you would react if you were trying to defend yourself and had that much firepower raining down on you.

RShackleford
Saint George, UT

Wow sounds like they are trying to make things up to justify the SWAT Raid for the illegal growing of some MJ in the guy's own home. Now he is a bomb making Terrorist. Terrorist? Really?

Frankly I would be interested to see the balistic reports. What angles the shots were fired, and from who's weapon they came from.

newslover
Salt Lake City, UT

sad situation... but odd in the 'facts'... no one has confirmed that Stewart had 'any' guns in the house... the DA is questionable in their statements.--so the question is, "After the police broke into his house... did he disarm one of them and start defending himself?"

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