December 16, 1997 saw the second of four raids on Hemp BC, and the cops went hog wild (see CC#12, Dangerous business: hemp store raids in Canada).
They pulled David Malmo-Levine and Ian Roberts, a store employee, off of a couch outside of the store and began pulling their hair, kicking and beating them. A throng of onlookers crushed inward as Marc Emery – Hemp BC founder, Cannabis Culture publisher and marijuana seed entrepreneur – entered the fray and spat on one of the cops.
“I wanted to show my disgust in a non-violent way, and to draw the police toward me and away from my employees,” said Emery.
It worked. Police grabbed Emery, dragged him across asphalt and slammed him into the back of a paddywagon. He smiled and waved through the reinforced glass as they drove him away.
Marc was charged with assaulting a police officer. He was in court, pleading not guilty.
“I was found guilty and fined two hundred dollars,” said Emery. “My defence was that it was justifiable as they were assaulting my employees. We have video tape of them kicking, shoving objects at, using a truncheon, and pulling on the hair of David Malmo-Levine and Ian. The police claimed they were justified because David had a warrant out for him for using a loudspeaker against public noise laws. But David didn’t know about the warrant because the police didn’t tell anyone. They just kept a warrant on him so that next time he protested some injustice they could arrest him.”