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Libertarians Mourn Latest Drug War Casualties

9/6/2001
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Tim O'Brien
(248) 591-3733
(313) 562-5778

HAZEL PARK. "On September 3 last year my [US] senate campaign took me to Rainbow Farm," recollected Libertarian Party chair Michael Corliss. "I remember shaking Tom Crosslin's hand, and telling him and his supporters that Libertarians fully endorse their right to grow and use marijuana on their own property."

The Libertarian Party has, since its founding more than three decades ago, opposed drug prohibition on principle. "It's shocking to realize," he continued, "that exactly one year later -- to the day -- federal agents would shoot him to death."

Grover (Tom) Crosslin was killed by an FBI sniper early Monday morning. The federal agent alleges that the marijuana legalization proponent first pointed a weapon at him.

"Tom was such a gentle soul," Corliss added, "I find it impossible to believe that he ever threatened anyone. Rainbow Farm is another incident like Mount Carmel in Waco [Texas] where everyone for miles around said these were decent, honorable people and good neighbors. There were no complaints. There was never any trouble -- until law enforcement authorities decided to make some."

About 100 police, deputies and federal agents surrounded the farm on Friday after Crosslin failed to appear in court on marijuana and gun possession charges. There were also several structure fires on the property, which authorities speculated were deliberately set by Crosslin and his long-time partner Rolland Rohm rather than permitting the buildings to be confiscated under asset forfeiture laws.

Rohm was also shot and killed the day after Crosslin by another federal agent who asserted the same justification -- that Rohm had aimed (but not fired) first at his killer.

"In view of recent federal atrocities," LP executive director Tim O'Brien added, "some of us have become more than a little suspicious when there is not a shred of physical evidence to support official versions of these kinds of incidents. Isn't it convenient for the FBI snipers that the only two other witnesses to what transpired in these separate confrontations are both dead? Does anyone believe," he asked, "that authorities would accept such uncorroborated claims of self-defense from any of us?"

Libertarians mourn these needless deaths. "Tom Crosslin," Corliss concluded, "believed that federal agents had no proper authority, based on the Constitution, to tell him he could not smoke whatever he wanted, as long as it harmed no one else. Tragically, he was dead right."

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