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(en) US, Modesto Anarcho #1 - On the Recent Wave of Police Repression

Date Sat, 21 Oct 2006 11:13:02 +0200


TWO YEARS AGO SAMMY GALVAN… …LAST MONTH MELLRON JOHNSON …AND WHO WILL IT BE TODAY?
The Modesto Police get away with murder. 9 people that we know of have
been shot to death by the Modesto Police since 2000, not to mention the
many that have suffered beatings, shootings, harassment, imprisonment,
and worse. Where are the police when slumlords and bosses screw working,
elderly, and poor people over daily? Where are the police when corporate
criminals like the Tallow and Convanta Plants spew pollution into the
community, swindle the city out of money, and then lie through their teeth
about doing it? The police are never there for these much higher crimes,
because the police exist to protect and maintain the very things within
society which cause poverty; and thus crime. They exist to preserve the
privileges of the rich in our community, and to keep the poor and
oppressed from stepping out of their place as quiet sub servants to
the upper class.
The police in this city kill us, and we remain silent. They kill us,
and then they lie about it. In 2001 this Police Department killed
Alberto Sepulveda, age 11, during a drug raid, while he lied on his
back unarmed. No drugs or guns where found in the home. In April of
2003, two officers killed Eustolio Aguilar after the 22-year-old Modesto
man was stopped by police and reached for his cell phone, and was then
shot to death. Police claimed he was reaching for a gun. In 2004, police
went to the home of Sammy Galvan, and shot him to death, later claiming
that he tried to "attack them" with a knife, although numerous witnesses
who saw the incident claim that Galvan made no threatening moves towards
police. This year, police shot Mellron Johnson, claiming that he tried to
attack them with a knife, it was later discovered that Johnson had no knife
on him when he was shot. Video was recorded during the shooting, but police
refuse to allow the public to view it. Then, in August, police brutally
beat, tasered, and peppered sprayed youth in the downtown area. Video was
also recorded from this incident, but has yet been released to the public.
How long must we continue to allow this occupying force to get away with
murder and lies? This police department continues to kill people mostly
young, poor, and of color, and nothing happens. The police who murder us
continue to work the force, walk our streets, and stay armed. The police
lie, and they continue to face no reprimand. Evidence such as video tapes
exist, and yet the public is still not allowed to view them.
Issuing complaint forms ultimately won't do anything. Those investigating
the allegations of abuse are police themselves, and they have no reason to
put any pressure on their fellow officers. Killings, abuse, cover-ups: these
are not problems within the department as result of "bad apples", these
problems are systemic within the department itself. We have to come together
as a community to not only confront police violence against us, but also to
stop the causes of poverty and alienation which causes crime in the first
place. Police, as they currently operate, will never solve the problems that
we face as working people.
People are now coming together to confront police violence in their local
community, and are calling this project Copwatch. The idea is simple: armed
with video equipment, cameras, and our eyes, we document and record police
interaction with people, and watch for wrong doing. People in Ceres have
already organized in this way, and were successful in curbing police
harassment in their communities. Crime will not go down with a stronger
state wielding a bigger stick over our heads, it will only go away when
we organize where we live. Let us create a community where the only thing
beaten down is the abuse of the police from our organized community power.
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