Meet Robert Earl Lawrence, sovereign citizen, who was killed by police Tuesday because the self-declared free citizen refused to perform the most basic of tasks and wound up losing his life over an incredibly inane request.
Paranoia doesn’t pay, kids.
The 30-year-old Alabama man seemed well-meaning as he dropped a stray animal off at the Dothan City Animal Shelter. However, the shelter requires everybody that drops an animal off to show an ID before leaving.
Instead of an ID, Lawrence handed the shelter personnel a piece of paper that explained he was a sovereign citizen and therefore not bound to any laws, federal, state or local. When the employees rightfully refused to let Lawrence leave without showing proper ID the “free citizen” allegedly became very angry which prompted the shelter workers to call the Dothan police.
When police arrived Lawrence was still irate and wouldn’t show the police his ID. When police tried to arrest Lawrence for not following a lawful order, a struggle allegedly ensued, and ended with the sovereign citizen shot in the abdomen. Lawrence was unarmed.
Lawrence later died from the gunshot wound that night.
Sovereign citizen had a tinfoiled past
Not only was Lawrence delusional in believing he could simply declare himself an independent citizen while living off his country’s resources and services, he was also prone to violence and threats, prosecutors say.
Earlier this year, Lawrence plead guilty to threatening and harassing a State Department of Human Resources employee in 2013 and served a three-month sentence for that crime.
Another incident, stemming from a child custody dispute, Lawrence threatened to hold a child hostage like Jimmy Lee Dykes. Dykes was accused of abducting a five-year-old boy and holding him hostage in a bunker under his house.
Lawrence also made references to the shootings in Sandy Hook in the same phone call to government employees where he mentioned Dykes.
Two women who have children with Lawrence also filed orders of protection against Lawrence; one woman was choked and the other had her life threatened.
The shooting is being investigated by the State Bureau of Investigations.
In cases where cops shoot unarmed citizens for very small crimes, it’s important to be critical of the official story. However, being a sovereign citizen doesn’t put a person in the best company either, the cop-killers from Nevada were sovereign citizens who had protested at the Bundy Ranch. Another sovereign citizen went to a courthouse in Georgia with an arsenal only to be shot and killed.
A citizen who declares they are above the law, simply because they say so, is going to have a rough time when they break the law and are confronted by officers who do not recognize sovereign citizens as having the legal right to disobey orders.
While it may seem silly for an animal shelter to require ID to drop off animals, think of it for the animals sake. If say, an animal were dropped off and later found to be abused, the last person to have contact with the animal should be contacted. Or in the case of animal hoarding or abuse cases, if a person is routinely dropping off sick or hurt pets, the agency may want to be able to detect a pattern of behavior over time.
There are many good reasons an ID is required to drop an animal off and letting one person go without it, simply because they say the animal shelter should break an important rule because they’re “special,” is insane.
H/T: Raw Story | Photo: Dothan Police