Police: Pot might be factor in Montana killing


MISSOULA, Mont. (AP) — Authorities are looking into whether marijuana or alcohol played a role in the case of a Montana homeowner accused of setting a trap and killing a German exchange student in his garage.

A newly published court document reveals Missoula police received a judge’s permission to test whether homeowner Markus Kaarma was drunk or high when he shot and killed 17-year-old Diren Dede. Officers found a jar of pot in Kaarma’s home the day he shot the teen, a police statement accompanying an April 28 request for a search warrant said. Kaarma also might have had marijuana stolen from his garage in a previous burglary, the document said.  

Police believe Kaarma “may have been impaired by alcohol, dangerous drugs, other drugs, intoxicating substances or a combination of the above, at the time of the incident,” the statement from Detective Dean Chrestenson said.

District Judge Karen Townsend granted the warrant to draw Kaarma’s blood to test whether any traces of intoxicants remained. The results likely won’t be released publicly while the investigation into Dede’s death is ongoing.

Kaarma’s attorney, Paul Ryan, did not immediately return calls for comment in response to the allegations. In a statement to the media, Ryan said Dede and a companion had broken into garages at least three of four times before the April 27 shooting, and the neighborhood was on alert after a series of burglaries.

Ryan said he received a transcript from a police interview in which the companion admitted to entering the garages. The statement did not identify the companion, but Ryan told the Missoulian newspaper he is an exchange student who has returned home to Ecuador.

Kaarma, 29, is charged with deliberate homicide in the slaying of Dede, who is from Hamburg. Prosecutors allege Kaarma and his live-in girlfriend set up sensors and a video monitor, then left their garage door open the night of the shooting.

Kaarma had been burgled twice before, and he told his hairdresser that he had stayed up for three nights waiting to shoot some kid, prosecutors said. The search-warrant request says Kaarma’s girlfriend, Janelle Pflager, told a neighbor that someone had taken all the marijuana and pot pipes out of the garage in a previous burglary.

Pflager also told the neighbor her husband smokes marijuana in the garage, and police found a glass jar of marijuana in his pantry the day of the shooting, the search warrant said. The night of the shooting, Kaarma and Pflager heard the sensors trip and saw a figure in the garage on the video monitor, prosecutors said. Kaarma took a shotgun out the front door and fired four shots into the dark garage, hitting Dede.

The boy was unarmed, and authorities have declined to say what he was doing in the garage. Ryan denied Kaarma lured anyone into his garage and said he left the door open to air it out after he and Pflager had been smoking cigarettes.

“Markus believed that the intruder posed an imminent threat to himself and his family,” he said. A court hearing has been set for May 12.


4 thoughts on “Police: Pot might be factor in Montana killing

  1. Good, I would shoot some bastard that came in my house to rip me off too. Yea, they just want to turn this into another smear thing against marijuana.
    If anything alcohol is the dangerous drug as we all know damned well that alcohol is the goverment drug of choice. Then we all know that alcohol never is involved in violent behavior now then don`t we – yea right. Alcohol is responsible for more violence than all the other drugs put together – not to mention long term health problems. Then again that is most likely why alcohol is a legalized drug.

    1. I totally agree, diggerdan. The only time I ever saw someone under the influence of pot kill someone, was in the Hollyweird propaganda film: “Reefer Madness”.

      Of course, nowadays, anyone who watches this film (usually stoned) will be too busy laughing, and overlook the true intention of this film: to persuade people to accept the unfounded, fabricated horrors of pot. Furthermore, anyone who has smoked pot before, will realize that all the trumped-up cons about pot are completely false.

  2. The pigs are desperate to keep marijuana illegal because it allows them to pry their way into a lot of homes, cars, and lives so they can steal stuff and frame people.

    They’re all very accustomed to lying in court, so they’ll say anything to hold on to their tyrannical power. It’s funny how marijuana was NEVER suspected of being a factor in any violent actions until there was progress in legalizing it.

    Poor little piggies might lose some of their ability to ruin lives for no other reason than to satisfy their sadistic need for power and control.

  3. “Police believe Kaarma “may have been impaired by alcohol, dangerous drugs, other drugs, intoxicating substances or a combination of the above, at the time of the incident,” the statement from Detective Dean Chrestenson said.”
    Best paragraph in journalism history. (sarcasm)

    Sounds like the author was on “alcohol, dangerous drugs, other drugs, intoxicating substances or a combination of the above”

    dangerous drugs, other drugs? Please enlighten me to you r definitions.
    Do you mean “dangerous” as in hot pockets, advil, cola, prosac? Do you mean “other” as in garlic, weed, fresh air, freedom?

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