Police: Self-proclaimed ‘sovereign citizen’ kills roommate with samurai sword


HARTFORD CT –Police responded to a home on Asylum Ave this weekend after friends of the owner, Victor King, could not be reached. 

When officers arrived at the scene, they located King’s body, which had been apparently cut several times and beheaded with a samurai sword. 

Police developed probable cause to arrest his roommate, Jerry David Thompson, and found him driving in the north end of the city and placed him under arrest for the murder. 

When detectives attempted to interview him, he had them retrieve a paper from his vehicle that alluded to him being a sovereign citizen, therefore, in his mind, not subject to United States Law.

Friends of King said that he and Thompson, who he rents a room to, had been having disputes over the rent not being paid. 

On Saturday, King confronted Thompson about the lack of rent and he became enraged and started waving a samurai sword at him.  King was able to escape the attack and reported the incident to police. 

There is no mention as to what came of that investigation, it is possible that King refused to pursue charges which would halt the investigation. 

According to court documents, Thompson appears to hold a the mentality that he is a sovereign citizen and only has to obey English common law. 

People with this belief do not believe they have to have driver’s licenses, they do not need to purchase houses, pay taxes, and they cannot be arrested. 

This of course could not be further from the truth, but, in their mind, they truly do believe they are above the law and can do anything they wish because they are immune from prosecution. 

The Southern Poverty Law Center actually produces courses on this ideology and describes sovereign citizens as being “rooted in racism and anti-Semitism.” 

This is due, according to them, because it seemed to have started from conspiracy theories which held that the Jewish people were in control of everything, from the government to banks.

They also believe, that under common law, they are free but if they are subjected to United States law, they are slaves.  Sovereign’s believe that there is a secret government that should not be in power and the judges are aware of this and simply not allowing them to do as they please because they are a part of the conspiracy.

As ridiculous as it sounds that someone can actually believe that a segment of the population is not subject to United States laws, clearly Thompson feels that way. 

Thompson, in spite of his belief that he cannot be moved against his will by law enforcement, was taken from police custody and appeared at his arraignment Tuesday at the Superior Court in Hartford. 

During the arraignment, Thompson refused to say anything when asked questions or spoken to by anyone in the proceeding.  This is most likely because he believes that neither the judge or anyone else in the courtroom has any jurisdiction since he believes in the ideology. 

Or course, what Thompson believes and what the laws are do not matter and the judge was clearly less than impressed as she ordered him held on a $2 million dollar bail. 

Thompson has also refused to speak to any court appointed lawyer who might represent him in the criminal case.  It is unclear at this point what the judge will do in order to ensure that he has representation when he refuses to speak to them.

An emotionally disturbed man charged at cops with a samurai sword. They responded with force.

ABC 7 New York reported that the officers dispatched to a house on Columbus Avenue in Oceanside around 6 p.m. Tuesday after calls came in about a disturbance.

When they arrived, the officers discovered that man in his 30’s and his father were involved in an altercation. The father had called local authorities after his son reportedly threatened harm against the family. 

An emotionally disturbed man charged at cops with a samurai sword. They responded with force.
An officer exits the Long Island home holding the samurai sword. (ABC 7 Broadcast)


When the police responded, the man’s anger turned from the family and was redirected against the officers. Nassau County police say that the suspect had been holding multiple knives in his hands. At one point, he dropped the knives, picked up a samurai sword and started advancing on the officers.

He ignored their commands to drop the weapon and they were left no choice but to utilize deadly force to neutralize the threat, police said.

The department issued a comment on the fatal incident.

“Two of our police officers arrived here, responded inside the residence,” Nassau County Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder said about Tuesday’s fatal shooting. “The son was very distraught. He had knives in his hand, he then dropped those knives and picked up a samurai sword. The officers instructed him to drop it, they said it several times. He then lunged at the officers and the officers fired shots.”

The officers at the scene immediately performed CPR on the man after he fell to the ground, but their lifesaving attempts would prove to be unsuccessful. 

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An emotionally disturbed man charged at cops with a samurai sword. They responded with force.


He was rushed to the hospital, but doctors said it was too late to save his life.  

Commissioner Ryder said that while the father was distraught over what had unfolded, he was surprisingly understanding of the measures the officers took. 

“The dad was very supportive, understood and actually said the officers did everything they could,” Ryder said.

Neighbors say they’ve watched as the family has struggled to cope with their son’s mental health issues over the years.

An emotionally disturbed man charged at cops with a samurai sword. They responded with force.
Police say the man picked up a samurai sword and came at them. (Wikipedia)


They say that the last week had become tense as the suspect had grown increasingly agitated and had been acting out.  

“He’s been acting erratic the past couple of days,” said Brian McShane. “He went to attack his sister and everything went to hell.”


McShane said that the father is having a difficult time coping with the sudden loss of his son. 

“The father is just decimated. It’s terrible,” said McShane. “Tragedy all around really for the family. Good people. And really just a disturbed boy.”

After all was said and done, four officers received medical treatment following the fatal shooting. The two officers who were originally involved in the incident were taken to the hospital to be treated for trauma, another officer injured his back while he was performing chest compressions during CPR, and a fourth was involved in a motor vehicle accident as he was responding to the scene. 


None of the officers have reported serious injuries and all are expected to make a full recovery. Local authorities are conducting an investigation into the details surrounding the shooting. 


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