Cop Watch LA Report on the South Central Farm: Police intimidate the community and Prepare to Attack
Tuesday May 16th, 2006
Cop Watch Los Angeles, was present at a vigil, organized by the Friends of the South Central Farm, at Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s house. There were 50 people protesting, and holding up signs, chanting, and drumming.
The Los Angeles Police Department also had a presence. They harassed and ticketed people who drove by and honked in support of the protesters. Their excuse for honking people who honked was that, any noise that was considered undesirable (meaning that anything that was above the current noise level) was considered illegal or unlawful. They used this to also attack the protestors who were drumming and chanting. They said they would detain everyone who was playing the drums (if we didn’t identify a leader). They were going to take down everyone’s information there (name, address, etc). At this point an individual chose to identify himself as the leader (for the purpose of diffusing the police harassment). Cop Watch took down the police contact information as well (name and badge number) and we maintained a presence at the vigil as long as the police did as well.
Friday May 19th, 2006
The South Central Farmers were having a benefit concert at the farm with guests Tom Morello, Aztlan Underground, Quetzal, Union 13, Sol de Centro and others. Cop Watch LA received an emergency call from the a friend of the farm (Code Red Alert), and told us that there were over 4 cop cars patrolling the farm and that police had allowed themselves to enter the farm (under orders of their “superiors” a.k.a. the Sheriff’s department).
Members of Cop Watch LA showed up with cameras and took down reports from the organizers of the event. When we first got there we saw the presence of the police around the farm. Talking to some of the organizers of the SCF, they told us that the police had mentioned that they would have a permanent presence at the farm. The LAPD spoke to one of the organizers asking questions about the organizations who are involved in the support of the farm, their level of militancy, and also asked about their plans for civil disobedience. At one point a police helicopter circled the farm, shinning their light on the concert, circled a couple of times and left.
The police are overtly trying to intimidate the community and supporters of the South Central Farm, as they prepare to attempt to oust the farmers. They’re also trying to assess the amount of support they have and from whom. So they can strategize for the groups that are going to defend the farm.
Cop Watch Los Angeles supports the South Central Farm and will be there to observe and document the law enforcement’s role and attacks on the farmers and their supporters. Cop Watch LA also provides security for the people.
If you wish to get involved contact Cop Watch Los Angeles at: firstname.lastname@example.org
COPWATCH Los Angeles is a program committed to the struggle that will end police brutality through observing and monitoring the pigs, offer support for those caught in the criminal (in)justice system, fight for the change without reformist consciousness, and ultimately work side-by-side with liberated communities to create revolutionary alternatives to policing, prisons, and systems of domination, oppression and exploitation.
-Form neighborhood patrols within communities we live in
-Offer support to those people and their families harassed, brutalized and/or murdered by law enforcement agencies
-Share resources, training and support with communities interested in creating a COPWATCH program
-Organize educational events, start a newsletter and develop intelligence through research and study groups
-Participate in the process of building autonomy, self-determination, and the self-organization of our many communities.
People at a vigil in front of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa\\\'s house. Tuesday May 16th, 2006.
The LAPD were ticketing people who drove by and honked in support of the protestors.
The police attempted to detain any protestor who had a drum.
Cops meet with the watch commander.
A police helicopter circled the benefit concert at the South Central Farm on Friday May 19th 2006. They shined the light down at people, circled several times, and left.
Some more footage of the police helicopter.