Skip to main content

Utah Undercover Cops Kill Woman Heroin User

Submitted by Phillip Smith on (Issue #758)
Consequences of Prohibition
Drug War Issues

Undercover police officers in West Valley, Utah, shot and killed a relapsed heroin user in the parking lot of an apartment building last Friday afternoon. Police have yet to confirm that it was a drug investigation, but all signs point to it. Danielle Misha Willard, 21, becomes the 56th person to die in US domestic drug law enforcement operations so far this year.

Danielle Misha Willard (
Because police have been slow to release information, the circumstances of the killing remain somewhat murky. But according to Fox 13 TV, police said two undercover officers were involved, and one received minor injuries, although not from gunfire. The officers were on the scene "trying to contact someone regarding an investigation, but the nature of that investigation hasn't been officially disclosed."

"We want to complete the investigation before any specific details are announced," said West Valley Police Sgt. Mike Powell. "It's in our best interest and everyone's best interest to collect all details before any specific statement is made."

According to the Deseret News
, a gray SUV belonging to Willard was parking in a parking stall and a red SUV was parked directly behind it. The driver's side of the red vehicle was wedged against the back of the gray SUV , in what appears to have been an effort to block it from leaving, but police said the red vehicle was not a police vehicle.

Willard's body was on the ground nearby. The front windshield of her vehicle had what appeared to be two bullet holes, and both the driver's side and the passenger's side windows also appeared to be shattered.

Police have not said if Willard was the subject of their investigation, whether there was an exchange of gunfire, or whether the young woman was armed.

Her mother, Melissa Kennedy, told Fox 13 Willard had been addicted to heroin and had gone to Salt Lake City to undergo drug treatment, but had recently relapsed.

"Danielle struggled with heroin, she tried many times to get away from it. She tried by herself. I went through with her for a couple weeks. She went through three facilities, the last one in Utah," said Kennedy, Danielle’s mother. It sounds like drugs were involved because undercover cops were there," she added.

While Willard may have been using heroin, she was not likely to have been armed, her mother said.

"My daughter has never carried a weapon in her life. She's about 100 pounds soaking wet," Kennedy said. "How can she be so scary that someone feels like they have to shoot her?"

Police said they would release more information Monday, but failed to do so.

Permission to Reprint: This content is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license. Content of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.


saynotohypocrisy (not verified)

They get help, and they don't go to jail and aren't forced to stop using, unless they are a danger to the community. And they don't have to pay exorbitant black market prices. All drug addicts should be treated that way, and everyone but some special interests would benefit.  Especially all the people who would otherwise be crime victims of addicts needing money for their next black market priced hit. And all the people worrying that could happen to them too, which is pretty much everyone.

Mon, 11/05/2012 - 12:52pm Permalink
unfree (not verified)

Sure wish the FED"S and all LAW ENFORCEMENT , would extend the freedom of the law like they do for the (MILLIONS OF ILLEGALS AND THE  SCUM BAGS THAT EMPLOY THEM) . I WANT THE SAME FREEDOM FROM  (LAW ENFORCEMENT ) !!!

Wed, 11/07/2012 - 7:46am Permalink
kelemi (not verified)

Warning: Your local narcs are armed and dangerous.

Wed, 11/07/2012 - 9:08am Permalink
Duane R. Olson (not verified)

Mr. PHILLIP SMITH; How much longer are "WE" going to tolerate the executive and judicial branch of the government of the United States operating as an imperious Emporium to arrest, prosecute, convict, and punish any person at random NOT REGISTERED with the attorney general for federal jurisdiction to be federally regulated in the closed commercial system of controlled substances for conduct "[i]n violation of Title 21, United States Code, Section 841(a)(1)" when the identical statute, Title 21, United States Code, Section 841(b) STATUTORILY EXEMPTS any person NOT REGISTERED to be regulated from the ambit of federal jurisdictional authority, or;

Is this STOP THE WAR ON DRUGS blog just another media-hype for wanna be writers to bitch?  READ THE STATUTES of Title 21, United States Code, Section(s) 801 through 904 dammit, and you tell me, "How much longer Sweet Jesus, How Much Longer"?

Thu, 11/08/2012 - 3:33pm Permalink
joebanana (not verified)

In reply to by Duane R. Olson (not verified)

The former United States has been infiltrated by a foriegn power. What we used to call a government, has become a domestic enemy, a crime syndicate, a terrorist regime. We no longer have a democratic, or a republic form of government, we have a tyrannical form of government. It's no loinger beneficial to the people(hasn't been for awhile) it's  harmful, deadly, and dangerous to the public at large. There is absolutely no accountability(hasn't ever been) no integrity, no honor, and no truth. They've shredded our constitution, allowed a fraud to be commander in chief, given themselves the power to assassinate anybody, at any time, for any, or no reason, without due process. You probably remember the way the Nazi party started, do things in the US today seem familiar?

Thu, 11/08/2012 - 11:29pm Permalink
Duane R. Olson (not verified)

Now I see, STWOD edit's out any writing they don't like just like the zombies of the radio and TV!

I'll get a crayon and write on the walls of the men's room, thank you very much!  But I damn sure won't quit until someone of authority convinces me that my Theory of Constitution Law and Strategy of Argument is WRONG!  I'm NOT a Republican, I am perfectly capable and frankly, I look forward to changing my mind so I can get some sleep nights! 

Thu, 11/08/2012 - 3:43pm Permalink
Duane R. Olson (not verified)

In reply to by Duane R. Olson (not verified)

To the Staff of "STOP the Drug War"!  My sincerest apologies for the hasty review I wrote above, I am truly sorry but then, what can you expect from a grouchy old man of 84?  

Thu, 11/08/2012 - 4:13pm Permalink
ANONYMOUS#22 (not verified)

wow...i'd like to meet and talk w/u, because you are right and are ready and do express your status.  i am disgusted with the tyrannical upheaval citizens r exposed to day after day after day-it depletes the spirit in soo many ways, thank you.

Sat, 12/22/2012 - 9:46am Permalink

Add new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.