police & legal for June 2008

July 2008 >> << May 2008

from the open publishing newswire...

featured stories from across the us...

Jun 07 2008
Eugene Police Taser UO Student Organizer at anti-Pesticide Rally

On May 30 Eugene police repeatedly tasered a UO student organizer at a peaceful downtown rally supporting an end to toxic roadside pesticide spraying in Lane County, Oregon. EPD wrongfully arrested 2 students and one community member collectively known as "The Kesey Three" -- as the events took place at Eugene's Ken Kesey "Free Speech" Plaza.

2 Gatherings for Peace in Support of "The Kesey Three":

  • Gathering for Peace in Support of "The Kesey Three": Thursday, June 5 from 12 - 3 at the EMU Amphitheater, University of Oregon, Eugene; Come wear a white armband to speak out against police brutality and the use of tasers in policing.
  • Gather in Support of "The Kesey Three" on Saturday, June 7 in Kesey Square (Willamette / Broadway) at 12 noon. We will gather together silently. Many will have an "X" painted over their mouths or will be wearing tape over their mouths as a statement of how the police are trying to silence free speech with their violence.
Flyers will be silently handed to those with questions.

Youtube Video of May 30 events

Jun 09 2008
Tre Arrow Accepts Plea Bargain

June 3rd, 2008 — Tre Arrow accepted a plea bargain at the Federal Courthouse this morning. Here's his message to everyone: A warm blessing to you all - i thank you for your support and for being here today. Some may look at this non-cooperation plea agreement as a victory. Some may see it as a defeat. It's really neither! It's simply another step in this journey as i walk my path of conscience. You see, it's never been about me. From before the days of the ledge-sit, right thru 'til today, this has been and will always be about the commitment to leave our Earth Mother in a healthier, more beautiful state then when i arrived... Read More | trearrow.org | Background: Cascadia Loves Tre Arrow: Outpouring of Support in Court Today

Jun 11 2008
Utter Injustice - Police do NOTHING!

This past Saterday on June 7th 2008 at [about] 9:40pm i was about to board the #15 bus at SE 34th & Belmont, on my way to work. Before i can make it on the bus, i get jumped by these two drunken a**holes, coming out of some sports bar from across the street! I'm trying to fight these two off, defending myself, with dozens of people everywhere [including the bus' occupants]. They push me into a storefront window, smashing it. I suffer a laceration on my lip & left ear. When the two take off, heading east towards 39th., i call 911. Many people, including the bus driver call 911. I'm on my cellphone talking to the dispatcher, telling her what just happened to me.

I stay on the scene, waiting for the police to arrive. As soon as they do, i approach them. But within seconds they ARREST ME! They force me to the ground, i'm completely subdued & they TASER ME!!!

Jun 13 2008
CopWatch Activist In Sonoma Faces Charge

Copwatcher and member of the Free Mind Media Center (a Santa Rosa based radical infoshop and bookstore) Ben Saari, was arrested on May Day while doing Copwatch and has charges pending against him.

Jun 14 2008
Police critics arrested, home seized in police raid!

June 13th, 2008 — Philadelphia Police descended upon the home of homeowners who have been questioning police tactics in Mayor Nutter's new "stop and frisk" program. 4 residents were arrested in their home at 17th street and Ridge Avenue, and the police are in the process of sealing the building. The homeowners are being held at the police station, no charges have yet been filed. Read More | UPDATE 6/14

Jun 14 2008
Police critics arrested, home seized in police raid!

June 13th, 2008 — Philadelphia Police descended upon the home of homeowners who have been questioning police tactics in Mayor Nutter's new "stop and frisk" program. 4 residents were arrested in their home at 17th street and Ridge Avenue, and the police are in the process of sealing the building. The homeowners are being held at the police station, no charges have yet been filed. Read More | UPDATE 6/14 | UPDATE 6/16 | City Paper article

Jun 17 2008
Vigil to Honor the Life of Anita Gay

On June 16th, around a dozen protesters gathered at Ashby and MLK in Berkeley to protest the shooting of Anita Gay, grandmother, mother, and resident of Berkeley. She was killed on February 16, 2008 by a Berkeley Police officer who is now back on the street.

Jun 17 2008
June 19th: Briana Water's Sentencing (Tacoma)

Briana is scheduled to be sentenced June 19 at 9 am at the federal courthouse at 1717 Pacific Ave. in Tacoma.

Jun 17 2008
Testimony at DC City Council Hearing on Police Checkpoints

On Monday June 16, 2008, DC City Council Member Phil Mendelson convened a hearing entitled "The Executive's Public Safety Initiatives and their Impact on Civil Liberties". The hearing lasted 7 hours and inluded testimony from more than 20 witnesses. Included here is the testimony the DC Radio Co-op's Naji Mujahid representing the Black August Planning Organization.

Jun 18 2008
Rebel Priests Push for Torture Abolition at West Side Church Appearance

Two priests who were jailed for demonstrating at a U.S. military base where soldiers are trained in torture techniques spoke at an Upper West Side church on Thursday night, hours after the Supreme Court ruled that detainees held at Guantanamo have a right to challenge their imprisonment before a judge.

Jun 18 2008
Siegel and Sen. Adams continue call for special independent prosecutor

Civil rights attorney Norman Siegel and State Senator Eric Adams D-Brooklyn continued to argue for a special independent prosecutor at an 80-strong community forum June 12, in Fort Greene, Brooklyn. The pair have been calling for reform since the verdict of the Sean Bell trial in April.

Jun 18 2008
Rebel Diaz Arrested! Hip Hop youth activists assaulted by NYPD

Looks like the NYPD are living up to their reputation of being bonafide 'dipshits'. We are just getting word that NYC Police located in what was once known as Fort Apache-the 41st Precint in the Bronx, have shown that police terrorism is alive and well. The word is in a unprovoked attack they badly assaulted two members of the Rap group Rebel Diaz.

The story we are hearing is that group Rodstarz and G1 were up in Bronx on Southern Blvd in Hunts Point, when they noticed the police were harassing a street vendor who was selling fruit. The two went over to witness the cops in action and when they saw the police being abusive they pulled out a cell phone to video tape the incident and asked for the officers badge numbers... Read More | 6/25 UPDATE: Police Conduct warrantless raid on Gonzalo Venegas (aka G1)'s apartment

Jun 19 2008
Why Shouldn’t the Harris County Sheriffs Office Enforce Federal Immigration Laws?

In August, Sheriff Tommy Thomas plans to send nine jailers for special immigration training in Glynco, Ga. to question inmates about their immigration status and hold them for federal agents through the Immigration and Customs Enforcement program known as “287(g)”. The Sheriff hopes to convince federal officials to provide training in Houston also, possibly in the sheriff’s academy.

Proponents of this “287(g)” program say it is needed to help deal with the “criminal alien crisis.” They ignore the fact that local law enforcement officers already have the authority to arrest criminals, both in enforcing state or local laws and assisting the federal government. Local law enforcement also helps the federal government deport criminals who are removable because of their offenses. Immigration authorities have had full access to the Harris County Jails for over a decade.

The Sheriffs decision to enter into a Memorandum of Agreement for the “287(g)” program with ICE is not an effective crime-fighting tool, but will have dire consequences for Harris County residents, instead... read full article | Join the Mobilization for resignation of Sheriff Tommy Thomas | Protest Tommy Thomas Blog

Jun 20 2008
Briana Waters Sentenced

Briana Waters was sentenced to six years in prison and three years probation. She did receive the terrorism enhancement. The judge recommended her to Dublin. Judge denied appeal bond and also the ability to self surrender.

Judge Burgess commented on the over 250 letters he received on Briana's behalf. Neil Fox, Ms. Waters' attorney, argued that the average of both Washington and Oregon cases was one and a half years per arson. Mr. Fox argued for five years with serving one and half suspending three and a half. The prosecution argued for ten years.

Briana Waters spoke eloquently today on her behalf. There were a dozen supporters in the court room.

Jun 21 2008
Pentagon Protest Activists in Court Today

(Susan Crane on the right with local Mount Ranier, Maryland activist Mary Parker) 9 activists including some from Baltimore and Washington DC appeared in court in Alexandria today for an earlier protest (Below are pictures of Eve Tetaz, Liz McAlister, and Peter DeMott)

Jun 22 2008
Joe Anybody Interviews Police Taser Victim - Assault Victim from The City of Roses

I interviewed Clifton in the neighborhood near where he was assaulted on Saturday 6-12-08. He told me on camera how he was assaulted by two assholes coming out of a bar on SE 48 and Belmont street here in Portland Oregon around 7pm at night. This happened as he was waiting for a bus to go to work on an evening shift...the job he lost due to be taken to jail and missing work.

Hear Mr Brooks tell "his version" of how he lost his job due to being on city street in Portland waiting for his bus to go to work and then being jumped by two drunks ... and if thats not enough having the portland police come long and shock the shit out of him and take him off to jail? [ Read More | Video: Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV | joe-anybody.com ]

Jun 22 2008
Philadelphia Activists Still Homeless After Arrests and Seizure of Home

On June 13, 2008, police entered a home in North Philadelphia without warrant and arrested its four residents, whose recent community activities included petitioning against police brutality and new police surveillance cameras in their community. One of the arrestees, Jen Rock recounts that police "said they were responding to a complaint about 'trespassing in an abandoned building'. We have lived in our home for almost 4 years." Read Report

Local writer Jeff Rousset summarizes the weeks events and argues that these recent incidents further reveal "the consistent dedication of the Philadelphia Police Department to squash dissent by any means necessary." Read Report

Past coverage from PhillyIMC and The Defenestrator.

Jun 23 2008
What Frequencies You'll Want to Watch During the DNC: Secret Service and DPD

Fellow radio enthusiasts and copwatchers,

I have aggregated a lot of lists of frequencies used by the United States Secret Service as well as other frequencies you might find interesting during the DNC. Feel free to listen to these and if you are able to garner more information about them or make corrections to the list, please do so and post the results for others to share!

Q: I heard it's illegal to listen to these frequencies, is that true?

read more

Jun 24 2008
2004 RNC protest videotapes subpoenaed by NYC government

I-Witness Video, which documented the police at the 2004 Republican National Convention in association with the National Lawyers Guild, has received two subpoenas from the City of New York in connection with civil lawsuits related to the RNC arrests. The subpoenas are so broad that we believe the City's true motivation is not defending themselves from lawsuits about false arrests, but rather intelligence-gathering. We have moved to quash the subpoenas and are fighting their demand to turn over the names of individual videographers. Read More | I-Witness

Jun 24 2008
Two N.O. Public Housing Activists to be tried on felony charges

New Orleans Criminal Court Judge Byron Williams ruled on Friday that public housing activists Jamie Loughner and Joy Kohler will face trial in July on the felony charge of possessing a false explosive. At the conclusion of a preliminary hearing in the the New Orleans Criminal Court Building Williams ruled that the district attorney showed that the state had probable cause for bringing Kohler and Loughner to trial. Loughner and Kohler were arrested at the December 19, 2007 anti-demolition protest/occupation at the B.W. Cooper Housing Development. The NOPD and the District Attorney contend that the sleeping dragons that Kohler and Loughner uses to attach themselves to apartment buildings in the development scheduled for demolition were "false explosive" devices.

Jun 24 2008
Appeal Update In the case of the New Jersey 4

On August 18 2006, while seven African American lesbians women were walking down the street in the West Village, a male bystander assaulted them with sexist and homophobic comments. The women tried to defend themselves, and a fight broke out. Three of the women accepted plea offers and the other four received sentences of up to 11 years in prison.

On Monday, June 23, 2008, Terrain Dandridge's case was overturned, all her charges were dropped and her record was cleared. Terrain Dandridge and her mother are due to arrive to the Bay Area to meet with Angela Davis at the San Francisco Women's Building. This public event is scheduled for Tuesday, June 24th, 7-9 pm, during PRIDE week in order to unravel the experiences of violence that Queer people of color face.

Jun 24 2008
Typhoon of Repression Warnings: The RNC Should Just Stay Home

This is a response to the recent star tribune article that refers to several local RNC protest groups and likens the threat of radical protest to "chemical attacks" and "terrorist attacks." Read the strib article here:

Regarding “St. Paul and cops gear up for worst at GOP convention,” (6.21), Matt Bostrom and other government officials have their facts wrong. In the history of protest in the Twin Cities, police have always been the ones to instigate violence. It is the police who will come equipped with chemical agents, firearms, tasers, and other weapons of mass repression. read more

Jun 24 2008
Can the Media Continue to Ignore "The Framing of Mumia Abu-Jamal"?

On Wed., June 25, 7pm, at The A-Space, 4722 Baltimore Ave., author J. Patrick O'Connor will speak and be signing copies of his new book "The Framing of Mumia Abu-Jamal." On Monday, O'Connor appeared on "Jazz and Justice" (LISTEN HERE) and a book-signing event at Baruch College in New York City. Tuesday night, he is appearing at The Brecht Forum alongside Pam and Ramona Africa. The San Francisco Bay Area is now preparing for a similar tour this Fall.

Despite an important NY Times article written in May, the mainstream media has virtually ignored this powerful new book which argues in painstaking detail that Abu-Jamal is innocent and that the actual shooter of Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner was a man named Kenneth Freeman. Watch a video-interview at City Hall (PARTS 1, 2, and 3), a text-interview an excerpt, a previous interview, O’Connor’s review of “Murdered By Mumia,” and his response to the March 27 ruling.

Jun 25 2008
Rally against abuses by Sheriff's Office demands resignation of Tommy Thomas

On Monday June 23rd, Between 60 and 80 protesters gathered at the county jail and marched to Tommy Thomas' office in protest of the abuses of power, resources and people. The crowd was very diverse in terms of age, race, and gender. There were more than a dozen organizations represented, and many spoke at a rally that took place in front of the Baker Street jail. Both rallies were interesting, as many families and friends of incarcerated people came to visit and watched or participated in the protest. [full article with photos] Full Audio from Baker St Jail Rally on Radio Indymedia

Why Shouldn’t the Harris County Sheriffs Office Enforce Federal Immigration Laws? It Harms, Not Helps, Public Safety From Grits for Breakfast, Some background on Tommy Thomas: Department Of Justice investigating Harris County Jail | Guard fears retaliation for revealing Harris County inmates still sleep on floors | Immigration and County Jails: Are high costs caused by an unfunded mandate or poor choices by county sheriffs? | Harris County officials wrong to think they'll build their way out of jail overcrowding

Jun 27 2008
Official Statement from Rebel Diaz on Police Attack

An official statement from Rebel Diaz on the recent armed, warrantless raid on Gonzalo Venegas (aka G1)'s apartment. Read Statement | Original Story

Jun 28 2008
Donna Deiss Facing 'Resisting Arrest' Charge; All Other Charges Dropped

HUFF (Homeless United for Friendship and Freedom) member and vehicular dweller, Donna Deiss, who had her right humerus bone fractured by Officer Christian LeMoss on May 9th, 2008 at the Three Trees parking lot on W. Cliff Dr. in Santa Cruz has had all charges but one dropped. She now faces a single charge of 148 (a) PC or resisting arrest. Misdemeanor charges of battery on a police officer and possession of marijuana have been dropped without explanation. Deiss is still scheduled for arraignment on July 2nd at 8:30AM on the lone remaining charge of 'resisting arrest.' "I plan to plead 'Not Guilty' and seek a jury trial," she told HUFF members.

Jun 30 2008
Portland Police Bureau Harasses Houseless

The Portland Police Bureau has continued its criminalization of houselessness, by sweeping 50 folks from under and atop the Burnside Bridge on 6/24, and sweeping almost 50 more folks from the Hawthorne and Morrison Bridges the following night. Their possessions were confiscated and thrown away. The Portland Coalition Against Poverty is hosting a demonstration to demand an immediate end to police harassment of poor and houseless people. It is on Wednesday, July 9th, at 5pm, in the North Park Blocks.

July 2008 >> << May 2008