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(en) US, California: DAAA* & Modesto Demands Justice for Sammy!

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Date Mon, 17 Jan 2005 09:59:07 +0100 (CET)

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Around 50 members from Modesto and surrounding community came out in
force to protest the police murder of Sammy Galvan, and continued
harassment of various communities by the Modesto Police Department.
In August 2004, 22 year old Sammy Galvan was gunned down by
Modesto Police officers after they responded to a domestic
disturbance call by Sammy's mother, (he was having an argument
with his girlfriend after returning from a family function). Two
Modesto Police entered Sammy's room, and as they gave him various
orders, Sammy rose up and was shot around 8 times. Those who saw
the shooting say Sammy was unarmed, although the police are
unclear as to whether or not he had a small knife in his hand, (his
room had various cooking supplies), but report they felt threatend by
Sammy. No police were harmed that evening, but by the end Sammy
would be dead, and his father would be hurt. After the shooting,
Sammy's father tried to rush to help, but he was tackled by the
Modesto police and his arm was broken three times. Police would
later try and say that Sammy had broken his fathers arm, (even at this
point he lay dying).

A week earlier, a call was made to the police that a man was running
around the neighborhood with a gun, and police were reported to be
asking over the radio if Sammy was the man who was the one with
the gun. 5 hours later, Sammy was DOA at the hospital, and his
family was finally told after they had been waiting in the hospital
lobby just to learn of his fate. The Modesto police then tried to arrest
Sammy's father for "fighting" with the police, and continually asked
the family if Sammy was in a gang or if his father was in a gang. In
the same way that police and press and now trying to tow the line that
the fatal police shooting in Ceres was caused not by a man not
wanting to return to Iraq, but by gang involvement, the murder of
Sammy Galvan was justified simply by the speculation as to whether
Sammy was a gang member or not.

To this day, the police have not yet finished their investigation of the
murder, and the Galvan family is still very upset and distraught over
the situation. Harassment to the family has also continued after the
shooting, with police driving by and even laughing at the family.

The DAAA Collective helped organize the event with the Galvan
family, and one collective activist from Ceres spoke in front of the
police station on the continued harassment of anti-authoritarian
activists in Ceres, and also for the need for an organized and united
community to defend itself from police attacks.

After the rally, a spirited march snaked its way through the
downtown, behind a banner that read, "Justice for Sammy - No more
Victims". Chanters shouted, "Sammy Galvan will be heard, Justice
will be served", "What do we want? Justice!\u201d
Anti-authoritarians lead the crowd in chanting, "What is the enemy?
Police Brutality!\u201d while other activists passed out outreach
material, and put up various anti-police brutality stickers. People also
remembered the murder of Alberto, who was 11 when police raided
his home looking for meth production. A police officer that had
already been involved in an incident where he shot a body of a man
that had "already committed suicide". The boy was lying on the
ground with his hands on his head, and was shot and killed. Police
later claimed that the gun may have gone off on accident, or that a
knife on the officer\u2019s gun may have caused the gun to fire. The
officer is still working for the police department. Marchers chanted,
"Albert and Sammy, Murdered to Young! Killed by a badge and a

The march received support from many honkers, and ended at
Graceada Park. Food Not Bombs passed out fruit, and fruit juice, and
various community members spoke to the crowd on their various
experiences on police harassment.

The DAAA Collective is saddened greatly, and our hearts go out to
all who have lost loved ones at the hands of law enforcement and
have yet to received justice. We do feel however that the event was
very positive, and the seeds have been planted for networking and
future organizing within the community between all those that have
been affected by police harassment. We are honored to have had the
opportunity to have spent the last few days organizing with the
Galvan family, helping with making banners and signs, and showing
Modesto that as anarchists and anti-authoritarians we are here to
struggle and to work for a community that will be free from
exploitation, fear, intimidation, and state violence in all forms. The
continued harassment of all people of color under the lie of "gangs"
needs to end. The harassment of homeless under the lie of "drugs"
needs to end. The harassment of activists under the lie of "terrorism"
needs to end. Our communities are stronger than their blue shields!

Pictures and more at: www.modanarcho.tk
Copied from infoshop.org
* DAAA = Direct Action Anti-Authoritarians (DAAA)

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