Why Did Vancouver Police Destroy This Private Property?

Couldn't VPD officers just have asked for the combination instead of cracking inton this expensive piece of private property? (Click to enlarge)Couldn’t VPD officers just have asked for the combination instead of cracking inton this expensive piece of private property? (Click to enlarge)Last month, for the first time in Vancouver’s history, police raided a medical marijuana dispensary within the city limits. During the raid, for reasons unknown, members of the VPD drug squad destroyed some expensive property.

When cops came busting through the door at iMedikate’s Renfrew St. location and arrested the 60-year-old manager, they didn’t ask her to open the non-profit group’s large, $2000 safe or the door to the office upstairs.

Though police confiscated the manager’s keys, they decided to kick down the locked office door and completely destroy the dispensary’s safe.

The manager told me she would have been happy to open the safe if police would have asked, but said they didn’t mention it at all.

Once the safe was open, police seized all the medicine inside, including buds, hash, and edibles.

I forwarded the picture of the obliterated safe (right) to Constable Lindsey Houghton of the VPD and asked him “why officers destroyed this expensive piece of property (that belongs to a non-profit organization) and also kicked in an office door upstairs instead of just asking the manger or other staff member to open them.”

Though I’d already interviewed Houghton at length for an article about the raid, he now told me he couldn’t explain things any further.

“As I mentioned last week,” Houghton wrote in an email to me, “as this is an ongoing investigation it would be improper of us to speak to specific details of the investigation. If someone has a concern or complaint regarding the service of the warrant or the actions of the officers during the service of the warrant we would encourage them to contact the Vancouver Police Department’s Professional Standards Section, the Office of the Police Complaints Commission, or any of the independent agencies that can assist with the complaint process.

I encourage readers to forward their concerns and complaints about the VPD’s needless destruction of private property in this case. Here’s the contact info:

Vancouver Police Department’s Professional Standards Section
call: 604-717-2670
email: [email protected]

Office of the Police Complaints Commission (in Victoria)
call: 250-356-7458 or 1-877-999-8707
email: [email protected]

iMedikate’s Renfrew location is still closed and picking up the pieces from the raid.

The move was the VPD’s first raid on a med-pot dispensary since the clubs began opening 15 years ago. No charges have been laid yet, but the cops say they are still conducting their investigation.

I guess we will find out soon enough if this is an isolated incident due “to complaints”, as the cops say, or if there are more raids in store on med-pot dispensaries in the City of Vancouver.

Jeremiah Vandermeer is editor of Cannabis Culture. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

Jeremiah Vandermeer
Jeremiah Vandermeer

Jeremiah Vandermeer is Chief of Operations of Cannabis Culture and Editor of Cannabis Culture Magazine & Pot TV.

Comments

13 Comments

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  2. Mary on

    Cops are nothing more than a gang of government thugs on a pathetic power trip with an IQ less than a doorknob.

  3. moldy on

    Guess your pigs are taking lessons from our pigs down here. It’s outa control and as soon as our last war winds down they’re going to start using drones on our citizens. This is just the start of things to come.

  4. A concerned human being. on

    Why are people that are against marijuana on this site? Its not like they want to learn about weed.. I’ve never gone on a conservative site in my life. They down talk things with no points of interest and don’t even have a reason besides “someone I follow blindly said (this)” almost like they are paid lobbyists. Show me facts. Prove that marijuana somehow is making a monopoly from an independent source with data not just hear say. Prove there is more crime and people are actually being hurt by peaceful protesters. More innocent people have been harmed by the government trying to destroy this plant than the people trying to save it. I’ve never seen a protest barge into a building ,smash everything in site and take people god given rights away just so a plant wont be smoked, when tobacco sales are through the roof every year. I am tired of all the lies and fake promises from our governments. (side note: Handcuffs are demeaning to humans and jails don’t work.)

  5. Anonymous on

    marijuana is to controlled i am 100% against the compassion clubs of BC having a monopoly on giving persons with obvious fake claims from medical use and are getting away with it Scott free and making tons of money I don’t know about other clubs like the Vics island botanical..etc as i haven’t met anyone affiliated with them the fact they say its not for profit is utterly unconscionable. i hope in the future the government will instill fair laws and govern the sales of marijuana more fairly as i hate to see one man have a monopoly on anything i thought activists were supposed to be against all monopoly? oil/electricity/perscription drugs/medicinal marijuana i dont want three to be phizer of weed and that’s whats happening….

  6. Miracle Emery on

    Wow constructive comments guys,
    In all honesty the powers that be are looking for any excuse they can to shut down medical dispensaries, The Comox Valley compassion club has been raided twice in the last year, in one raid another disabled tenant in the house who had nothing to do with the club was arrested, there have been several other raids across the country on dispensaries that have never had difficulties with the authorities before. They are cracking down folks and we need to start taking precautions to protect the medicine as well as those who depend on us for their meds.
    More importantly we need to stand up and be counted, I’m not posting anonymously today for a reason, I’m standing up and stating for all to see that this is WRONG, marijuana is a viable medicine, food source, you can produce fuel, fiber for paper and cloth and one of the strongest building materials known to man from this simple plant. For it to be illegal is simply a travesty.

    Miracle Emery
    Board of Directors
    Comox Valley Compassion Club

  7. Anonymous on

    The first thing that I thought of when I read this is the last W5 episode that I saw. It was on police brutality in BC. This story is very like it in describing a police that are out of control and the people can do nothing about it.

    http://www.ctv.ca/CTVNews/WFive/20111112/w5-copout-11112/

    There is a real problem there. The worst part of it is that cops investigating cops just let’s them get away with murder, literally. Agencies that are set up to be police watchdogs are not doing there jobs, they have no teeth and the offenders remain in there jobs without reprimand or consequence. They get commendations for brutality that is beyond reason for a civil society.

    This case, among others, should end up in Civil court if the Criminal courts are not going to do anything. There is certainly enough evidence of the complete disregard for personal property.

  8. O. B. Server on

    “Gestapo men turned the whole place upside down. They pulled out drawers and tore the beds apart. They even emptied the salt container onto the table and poked through the ashes in the stove, searching for something they could use to incriminate my father.” Another Gestapo search: “They even sifted through the salt box – it looked like Sodom and Gomorrah when they got done.”70 A child’s memory of a Nazi visit in 1938: “Men were standing there with axes in their hands, all dressed in black. They ran around axing all our furniture and throwing things out the window. They smashed the closet door and broke all my toys.”71
    [Richard L Miller, Drug Warriors & Their Prey, p.48]

  9. Bud Grinder on

    Its a typically small-minded bully response to the overturning and burning of cop cars. Small minds do that (the cop cars) and equally small minds on the opposite side do similar when they know they can get away with it. They were probably all ignorant, destructive vandals and bullies long before they became piggies.

  10. Point of View on

    Sounds like these Vancouver police thugs are practicing to be an arm of the DEA. All the destruction to this establishment was totally unnecessary. It’s scary to think what will happen once bill c-10 is rubber stamped by our conservative senate. It is hard to remember a story where the Vancouver police or the RCMP were in the news for arresting real violent criminals. In this case they are pursuing the weak and sick. Not very honorable.

  11. Mr. X on

    I think it was the first season of Futurama, where Fry and Bender were escaping into a storm drain.

    Bender was smugly saying “I suppose you need me to bend that grate”, while fry simply tossed it aside and crawled in, not needing bender to bend the grate.

    Bender, befuddled, followed. But, being Bender, had to do what Bender does, and bent the grate anyway.

    In case this analogy is lost on anyone:

    State terrorist thugs is as state terrorist thugs do.

    Also see, the frog and the scorpion.

  12. Anonymous on

    You are an alcoholic pig toll.

    What are you babbling about. “if they obliged then there be no problems””

    If who obliged whom?

    ” lets open a medical dispensary across the street from a school
    bright idea moron”

    There is nothing wrong with a cannabis dispensary. There are outlets for pharmaceutical drugs and ethanol across the street from schools; Idiot!

    If you had any evidence that Mark’s committed a crime you should have reported it. and apparently you did. But the “crime” was only being compassionate to the sick an dying. A cowardly alcoholic pig like you would prefer the sick and dying to fuck off and die somewhere else.

    FUCK THE PIGS!

  13. Anonymous on

    if they obliged then there be no problems, lets open a medical dispensary across the street from a school
    bright idea moron