Dispensary volunteer was at store: ‘They tore up our house’
Randy Wall is a 52-year-old AIDS patient and volunteer at Hillcrest Compassionate Care, one of the medical marijuana dispensaries raided today by the San Diego Police Department. Wall said he has been a member and a greeter for the store for a year, about as long as the place has been in business. Wall said they were preparing to shoot a TV commercial at about 11:30 a.m. when police arrived. Wall had been cleaning a back office.
“When I walked out, we heard the cops were coming, but we said, ‘Be cool, be cool,’” he said. “We thought they were going to check our permits. But there was like 20 cops with guns drawn and battering rams. We told them we would unlock the door if they gave us a second.”
“We said, ‘Hold on! Hold on! We’ll let you in,’ but they busted the door open,” he said. “Then they busted down another door that was locked. There was nothing in there; it’s a bedroom where someone sleeps. We have one person stay there; we have to have a security guard in there 24-hours a day.”
“They made us go up against the wall, and they frisked everybody. Then they sat us down right where we were standing, and they proceeded to ask each person questions. I didn’t hear what they were asking for, but I think it was name, address, basic information.”
Wall said police didn’t tell them why they were being taken in. He said they only spoke to the owner of the shop, Rev. Paul Cody, who was arrested.
“It seems to me that everybody that worked there got arrested today. They handcuffed everyone—everybody that worked there was in handcuffs that I saw,” Wall said.
Wall said police were not at all rough with the employees, but they were less gentle with the store itself.
“They acted like complete animals. They tore our house up for no reason,” he said. “I’m so upset about this. I thought the way that they did it was very unprofessional. They came in like we were a bunch of common criminals, which we weren’t. They just made you feel like you were nothing, just a common criminal.”