Initially there were murmurs that it was suicide. But after his family learned that Sadek had been working as a confidential informant for a drug task force in the months before his death, they have pushed for answers, and for changes in the practice that they believe led to their son’s killing.
Sadek was busted for selling $80 worth of marijuana. He faced the possibility of more than 40 years in prison.
“That would scare the bejesus out of anyone,” said his mother, Tammy Sadek. “They get kids who have no knowledge of the law. They don’t offer up an attorney during this whole thing.”
Tammy Sadek says police should stop using college students accused of nonviolent offenses to carry out undercover drug buys. Her son’s case has been compared to others in which young kids busted for minor drug offenses are told they can reduce their sentence if they help police catch others. The practice has been criticized by the American Civil Liberties Union and led to reforms in one state after an informant was murdered by those she was trying to help catch.
Authorities in North Dakota said Sadek was an adult who knew what he was doing when he chose informant work. A review of how the task force handled Sadek didn’t find wrongdoing.
But a year later, the case remains unsolved — with no official determination of suicide or homicide.
The gun that killed Sadek has not been found, but a pistol that shoots the same sized bullets disappeared from one of the Sadeks’ farm vehicles at their ranch near Rogers, N.D. Tammy Sadek said she doesn’t know if it’s connected because it’s not clear when the pistol was taken.
Sadek’s roommate, Drew Kugel, said Sadek didn’t appear depressed in the days before his disappearance. Kugel didn’t know about the undercover work his roommate was doing. He only knew Sadek as a quiet person who liked to ride his skateboard around campus and got good grades.
“Something went bad,” he said. “He was just a college student and I think they maybe sent him out to do something way over his head.”
His family said Sadek was a thoughtful kid who loved the outdoors and planned to take over the family farm.
He spent two …Read More