A video made by a Florida sheriff was meant to taunt drug dealers in the community – but it’s also being compared to Islamic State hostage videos.
Released Friday on Facebook, the 90-second video message from Sheriff Peyton Grinnell features a stern message to heroin dealers in his community, as he’s flanked by four deputies in body armor and black face masks, who stoically stare into the camera.
Saying he has received phone calls about recent heroin overdoses, Grinnell asks the community to report the locations of drug dealers who are pushing this “poison.” But the community outreach is quickly overshadowed.
“To the dealers who are pushing this poison, I have a message for you: We’re coming for you,” he says. “Enjoy looking over your shoulder, constantly wondering, if today is the day we come for you. Enjoy trying to sleep tonight wondering if tonight’s the night our SWAT team blows your front door off the hinges.”
It ends with Grinnell telling dealers, “run,” before he and his masked deputies face to the right and walk away.
The video attracted thousands of comments as it went viral on Facebook. Some people made comparisons to videos from the Islamic State, the terrorist group also known as ISIS whose propaganda often features masked men delivering fiery statements.