Did that title bring you here. I hope so. Our media must be able to walk and chew gum at the same time. It should be able to cover the various injustices in this country whether singular or systemic. Why then is the David Hooks case receiving such little coverage comparatively. I will give my most sincere opinion at the end of the piece. But first here is the David Hooks story.
The David Hooks story is just as important as the Michael Brown Story
StopTheDrugWar.org describes the event as follows.
A Georgia SWAT team shot and killed an armed homeowner during a September 24 drug raid sparked by the word of a self-confessed meth addict and burglar who had robbed the property the previous day. No drugs were found. David Hooks, 59, becomes the 34th person to die in US domestic drug law enforcement operations so far this year.
According to WMAZ TV 13, Laurens County sheriff's deputies with the drug task force and special response team (SWAT team) conducted a no-knock search on Hooks' home in East Dublin on the evening of the 24th. When the raiders burst through the back door of the residence, they encountered Hooks carrying a shotgun. Multiple deputies opened fire, shooting and killing Hooks.
According to his family, Hooks was not a drug user or seller, but was a successful businessman who ran a construction company that, among other things, did work on US military bases. Hooks had passed background checks and had a security clearance.
The search warrant to raid Hooks' home came about after a local meth addict named Rodney Garrett came onto the property two nights earlier and stole one of Hooks' vehicles. Garrett claimed that before he stole the vehicle, he broke into another vehicle on the property and stole a plastic bag. Garrett claimed he thought the bag contained money, but when he later examined it and discovered it contained 20 grams of meth and a digital scale, he "became scared for his safety" and turned himself in to the sheriff's office.
Hooks' family, however, said that Garrett had been identified as the burglar and a warrant issued for his arrest the day after the burglary. He was arrested the following day; the raid happened that same night.
Garrett's claims were the primary basis for the search warrant. But investigators also claimed they were familiar with the address from a 2009 investigation in which a suspect claimed he had supplied ounces of meth to Hooks, who resold it. Nothing apparently ever came of that investigation, but the five-year-old uncorroborated tip made it into the search warrant application.
And it was enough to get a search warrant from a compliant magistrate. Hooks family attorney Mitchell Shook said that even though the warrant was not a no-knock warrant, the Laurens County SWAT team did not announce its presence, but just broke down the back door of the residence.
This family was in the sanctity of their home. Like any other family seeing hooded folks seemingly coming to burglarize their home, David Hooks put himself in a defensive modal with a shotgun. As it turns out it was not loaded nor did he have the time to go into a mode to defend himself. The police simply opened up on him with at least sixteen shots.
Now the Sheriff's office like the police in Ferguson is in a quasi news lock down. Like Ferguson it seems they are trying to manufacture a justifiable reason an innocent American citizen is dead. In fact the Huffington Post reported a few weeks ago that a jailhouse interview with the criminal tipster Rodney Garrett by the Hooks family was abruptly ended six minutes into the interview with their private investigator Christopher Frost.
There are really two distinct stories here that serve two different purposes. They should be examined.
The first story is the ever increasing misbehavior of police that treats the citizens it chooses to confront as if America is a police state. The reasons they attack citizens are multifaceted. A drug raid for political purposes? The killing of those others that simply make a police officer mad? The killing by racist cops? It does not matter because police officers rarely get indicted irrespective of who they kill. People of color are disproportionately killed by police however as the David Hooks case shows everyone must be concerned. When all Americans see that it is not a problem of the others but a problem of the 'us' it will benefit our society at large.
The second story is the national media coverage. The David Hooks police execution is likely even more scary than the Eric Garner or Michael Brown case. There was not even a confrontation with the police. David Hooks was in the sanctity of his home. One would think that this is a story that would scare not only every Georgian, but every American. There are other stories that are similar. I dare agree with some who claim that if David Hooks were Black the national media would be all over it to promote their simplistic narrative of race division. As it stands not covering this case nationally creates a human type resentment that race baiters have already begun to use.
Acknowledging this case does not diminish the severe problem in the country in the aggregate on how White privilege has been damaging to many. Irresponsible non-coverage does little to ensure that the conversation can be had in the realm of police brutality let alone many other important issues where it raises its ugly head.