Emeute à Oakland janvier 2009

carte-californie

Référence

« Los Angeles et Oakland, du noir et blanc à la couleur ! Nouvelles coalitions politiques dans les villes multiculturelles »

par Frédérick Douzet , Raphael J. Sonenshein


130 – Géographie, Guerres et Conflits (troisième trimestre 2008)

Documents

Les vidéos de la mort d’Oscar Grant

Les vidéos des émeutes

Three charged in Oakland riot

OAKLAND, Calif., Jan. 10 (UPI) — Three men have been charged for their alleged roles in this week’s racially charged riot in Oakland, Calif., authorities say.

Alameda County District Attorney Tom Orloff formally charged Andrew Lewis, Cleveland Valrey Jr. and Lee Y. Pang Friday for crimes they allegedly committed during Wednesday’s demonstration called to protest the New Year’s Day shooting death of an unarmed young black man by a transit police officer, the Oakland Tribune reported.

Lewis, 20, said the shooting of 22-year-old Oscar Grant III in the back was adequate reason for rioters’ rampage. Grant was fatally wounded as he lay on his stomach at a train platform where police had ordered several riders to the ground following a dispute among riders on a train.

« It was for a cause, » said Lewis, who was charged with misdemeanor vandalism and felony cocaine possession Friday. « The brother got his life took. Somebody got to pay. »

Valrey, 30, another of the nearly 120 people detained during the fracas, was charged with felony arson for allegedly setting a garbage can on fire.

Pang, 28, was charged with two firearm possession charges for allegedly carrying two semi-automatic handguns.

Orloff told the Tribune no decision had been made whether to file criminal charges against Johannes Mehserle, 27, the transit officer responsible for Grant’s death who resigned after the shooting.

Riots in the Streets of Oakland

GNN.TV

Sat, 10 Jan 2009

By Nathan Coe, GNN

A roundup of coverage of the riots in response to the New Year’s Day police slaying of unarmed Oscar Grant at a BART station in Oakland, CA

Undoubtedly inspired by recent events in Greece, a protest of hundreds of people that took to the streets in response to the unprovoked police execution of an unarmed man at a BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) station in Oakland, California, turned rowdy Wednesday night.

The initial protest included many community organizers, as well as hip-hop artists and others, and was overwhelmingly non-violent, though numerous references to community self-defense were made throughout the speeches delivered at the rally. This atmosphere of pacified pacifism, however, was not to last.

Too many have for too long been tinged with the disillusioned resentment that accompanies fruitless and ineffectual protest and sanctioned, co-opted, disarmed and declawed activism. This time, the killing of an unarmed citizen by police, particularly a young person of color, would not go without an answer, and their response would be heard world-wide. In recognition of the fact that protests and inspirational speeches are an important component, but alone will not suffice, in ending abuses of power and the societal inequities that necessitate them, the people took their desires—unmediated—to the streets.

Riot police responded with massive presence and the deployment of chemical weapons such as tear-gas and pepper spray as protesters manifested their dignified rage in the streets of Oakland. Rioters attacked a McDonald’s, breaking its windows, smashed in the windows of several cars, some of which were lit ablaze, dragged dumpsters into roadways, lighting them aflame, and danced on at least one deserving gestapo-mobile.

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A car burns as police push a group of protesters down Fourteenth Street on Wednesday, January 7, 2009, in Oakland, Calif. Demonstrators from a protest against the fatal BART police shooting of Oscar Grant III took to Oakland streets Wednesday night blocking traffic, setting fires and damaging property. Scores of police, including BART police, Oakland Police Department and officers from the Housing Authority responded. (Anda Chu/Staff)

Although police initially reported as few as 14 arrests, news chopper cameras caught at least one mass arrest that appeared to sweep up around 40-50 arrests. While Democracy Now! initially reported only 15 arrests, and update has now reported at least 105 arrests. As in Greece, we must stand and act in solidarity with those arrested, and demand their immediate release.

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Police take a protester into custody along Fourteenth Street in Oakland, Calif., on Wednesday, January 7, 2009. Demonstrators from a protest against the fatal BART police shooting of Oscar Grant III took to Oakland streets Wednesday night blocking traffic, setting fires and damaging property. Scores of police, including BART police, Oakland Police Department and officers from the Housing Authority responded. (Anda Chu/Staff)

The rioting, of course, has not been without criticism from within “the movement.” A discourse has emerged, or rather resurfaced, surrounding the appropriate targets of insurrectionary rage and attack. As one commentator on Infoshop News, responding to another commentator who denounced the property destruction, put it:

Trying to prevent people from expressing their rage, however inappropriate the targets, is part and parcel of being an activist. Activists are politicians-in-training, specialists in organizing other people’s discontent. Part of organizing other people is telling them which windows are off-limits for their bricks. Remember those Global Exchange politicians who protected Niketown in Seattle? Same shit here. One of the best things I saw on TV was a guy who watched his car going up in flames. He put it into the context of police abuse, never losing sight of how outraged members of the black community are, and refusing to relativize his property loss. Good for him. There was also some petit-bourgeois store-owner complaining about his front window, whining that he is also against police brutality. Fuck him. If revolution is going to be real, the whole system that keeps police around to protect commodity relations must be abolished. From Niketown to Thriftown, it all has to come down.

From Oakland to Greece, from Augusta to France, we must resist police violence, brutality, and terrorism in all its forms, as well as the system that necessitates it. We must stand together in solidarity against the uniformed and armed thugs of the State, and in solidarity with those who choose to resist.

Most importantly, we must choose to resist and take action where we are, in our own communities and contexts. The abuses of authority, control, and power are everywhere. Take action today in your own community. Hold ‘Know Your Rights’ trainings, form a civilian review unit, or start a Copwatch chapter. Hold the police accountable for their actions and call them out on their crimes. Defend yourself, one another, and your neighborhoods. Cops, like the State they protect, are criminals and gangsters. They should be considered armed and dangerous.

Wherever the State and its thugs kill, we must be prepared to respond. The uniformed criminal gang members known as police must know that we are watching them. They must know that if they kill us, there will be consequences. Real consequences, in the streets. We recognize that their laws are not on our side.

But remember: whatever you do, don’t attack, vandalize, or occupy police stations. Certainly don’t vandalize or destroy cop cars or corporate property. After all, we wouldn’t want you to do anything that actually threatens the status quo, now would we? Forget what happened in Greece. Close your eyes and go back to sleep…*

*Note heavy tone of facetious sarcasm.

¡Oscar Grant Presente! ¡Alexandros Grigoropoulos Presente!

08oakland-600Police officers arrested a man after protesters angry over a deadly New Year’s Day shooting of a young black man by a transit police officer erupted into violence in downtown Oakland on Wednesday night.

Oakland: Riots In The Streets:

“Walter Benjamin asked himself how in 1830 the Paris rioters shot at town clocks, in different parts of the city and without coordinating the action; for our part we cannot fail to reflect on why wild youths of today are burning cars. In fact, what does the car represent in contemporary society? We leave the question unanswered.”

Stop protesting.

Start fighting.

A protest was held January 7th at the Fruitvale BART station. Protesters gathered at 3pm and by 5pm the crowd had swelled to around one thousand people. At 6pm some of the protesters started marching down Broadway towards downtown Oakland. Around 6:35 there was a confrontation with a police car and a burning dumpster was shoved into it as people shook and jumped on the car. Hundred of police then moved in, shooting tear gas into the crowd. The protest continued into the night as dozens of protesters took over and blocked the intersection of 14th and Broadway for over an hour with several people lying on the ground to show how Oscar was lying when he was shot. A line of hundreds of riot police then moved in and pushed the crowd up 14th. The crowd pushed back and dozens of car windows were broken and a minivan was set one fire. The police then charged and as protesters dispersed windows were broken on a McDonalds and at least two more cars were set on fire.

Oakland: Rioting Breaks Out in Response to Cop Murder:

Indybay.org: A protest began on January 7th at the Fruitvale BART station at 3pm. Hundreds of protesters later marched towards downtown Oakland and there was a brief confrontation with police who shot tear gas into the crowd.

The protest continued into the night as dozens of protesters took over and blocked the intersection of 14th and Broadway for over an hour. A line of hundreds of riot police then moved in and dozens of car windows were broken and a minivan was set one fire. The police then charged, and as protesters dispersed, windows were broken at a McDonald’s, and at least two more cars were set on fire.

OAKLAND, Calif. — A march protesting the slaying of young Oakland father at the Fruitvale BART station early New Year’s Day became violent Wednesday evening as a group of rampaging marchers rioted through downtown.

By 10 p.m., police reported 14 people had been arrested, but footage shot by NewsChopper2 about an hour later revealed a mass arrest at 20th Street and Broadway near the Paramount Theatre that looked to net in the neighborhood of 40 to 50 suspects.

Several people gathered at the Fruitvale Bay Area Rapid Transit station Wednesday afternoon for a rally to protest the shooting death of Oscar Grant III at the hands of a transit agency police officer at the station early Jan. 1.

For safety reasons, BART trains are bypassing the Fruitvale station while the protest continues. Organizers said the rally was planned to last until 8 p.m., but by 5:30 a substantial portion of the rally spontaneously started marching through the streets of Oakland towards downtown.

While the majority of the marchers were well behaved, just after 6:30 p.m. a splinter group of protesters started causing trouble at the intersection of 8th Street and Madison not far from the Lake Merritt BART station.

A fire was lit in a dumpster on wheels that was rolled into the middle of the street and swarmed a police car that was nearly tipped over as the angry protestors beat on the vehicle with sticks and rocked it violently back and forth.

Oakland police responded in riot gear, shooting tear gas and approaching the crowd with shields, helmets and batons drawn to force them to disperse. The Oakland Fire Department was quickly able to put out the dumpster fire without event.

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Smoke rises from a burning car along Madison Street on Wednesday, January 7, 2009, in Oakland, Calif. Demonstrators from a protest against the fatal BART police shooting of Oscar Grant III took to Oakland streets Wednesday night blocking traffic, setting fires and damaging property. Scores of police, including BART police, Oakland Police Department and officers from the Housing Authority responded. (Anda Chu/Staff)

San Francisco: Demonstration Against Police Murder of Oscar Grant:

Tonight’s events in Oakland made it clear to everyone that police murders will not go without reprisal. The burning cars and smashed windows of the evening’s conflict showed that the people of the Bay Area will not forget Oscar. The kids know what’s up. We are not interested in passive, impotent and utterly ineffectual displays of disapproval. The Mayor’s calls for calm fell upon deaf ears. We will not remain calm when a young father has been executed by the police, because to them, a passive youth is an easy target. We will not lie down and be shot in the back.

Today we heard the news that Officer Johannes Mehserle resigned from the police force. This is no consolation.

The problem is bigger than Oakland. The relationship between officer and civilian is perverse: an unelected authority enacting an unencumbered power of life and death over a population.

Last month, San Francisco saw a confrontational solidarity action against the murder of a young man on the other side of the world, yet there has been no response to the murder of a young man on the other side of the bay.

On Monday, January 12 at 5pm meet at the Civic Center BART station for a demonstration against the police murder of Oscar Grant.

The young people of Oakland have refused to take this lightly. Let’s show them that they are not alone.

In the early morning hours of New Year’s Day, an unidentified BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) officer executed an unarmed man on an Oakland train platform. Oscar Grant, who was being restrained by officers, was lying on the ground with two officers kneeling on top of him when one officer casually drew his service weapon and shot Grant in the back, killing him.

(San Francisco Chronicle) (01-04) 19:38 PST Oakland — BART’s police chief asked for patience from the public on Sunday after video footage surfaced showing one of his officers fatally shooting an unarmed man who was on the ground on a station platform on New Year’s Day, and after an attorney for the dead man’s family said he planned to sue the transit agency for $25 million.

Chief Gary Gee said he, too, had seen video images of the shooting of Oscar Grant, a 22-year-old supermarket worker from Hayward. But Gee said he found the footage to be inconclusive, and he said his investigators still needed to interview a key witness – the officer himself.

That officer, a two-year veteran, has not been publicly identified and has been placed on routine administrative leave. BART officials have said only that his handgun discharged at about 2:15 a.m. Thursday at the Fruitvale Station in Oakland and that the bullet struck the unarmed Grant, who had been detained with several others.

Officials have not said whether the officer intended to shoot Grant. One source familiar with the investigation said BART is looking into a number of issues, including whether the officer had meant to fire his Taser stun gun rather than his gun. Alameda County prosecutors are conducting their own investigation, as is standard in officer-involved shootings.

“We are taking this investigation very seriously,” Gee said during a news conference at BART headquarters in Oakland on Sunday. “As frustrating as it is, I want to stress that we cannot and will not jeopardize this case by discussing details before the investigation is complete.”

Gee spoke after attorney John Burris held his own news conference at his Oakland office, where he was surrounded by Grant’s family members and friends and witnesses to the shooting.

Burris said he plans to file a $25 million claim this week against BART – a legal precursor to a civil lawsuit – because, he says, witness statements and video footage recorded by other passengers make clear that the shooting was unjustified.

“It is, without a doubt, the most unconscionable shooting I have ever seen,” said Burris, who has won several damage awards against Bay Area police departments and worked on Rodney King’s civil suit against the city of Los Angeles. “A price has to be paid. Accountability has to occur.”

“It’s pretty clear from the tape and from witnesses,” Burris said, “that (Grant) wasn’t doing anything of a threatening nature to the officer.”

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Fatal police shooting sparks violent protests

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — In grainy cell-phone videos played over and over on the Internet, police officers force an unarmed black man to the ground and hold him face-down on a crowded train platform. Suddenly one of the officers draws his gun and fatally shoots the man in the back — then looks up.

The New Year’s Day death of 22-year-old Oscar Grant has led to violent street protests amid allegations from the family’s attorney that some of the officers used racial slurs.

The officer remains free and has not been charged with any wrongdoing. And some experts have questioned whether he fired his gun deliberately or mistakenly believed he was using his stun gun instead.

At a rally Wednesday attended by hundreds of people, Shawanda Thomas held a fluorescent yellow sign that read: « Oscar Grant: Murdered! The Whole Damn System is Guilty. »

Extra police were posted Thursday at Bay Area Rapid Transit stations after a group of angry demonstrators smashed storefronts late Wednesday, set fire to cars and clashed with officers equipped with riot gear and tear gas in downtown Oakland. More than 100 people were arrested and about 300 businesses were damaged.

Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums called for calm. « Even with our anger and our pain, let’s still address each other with a degree of civility and calmness and not make this tragedy an excuse to engage in violence, » he said. « I don’t want anybody hurt. I don’t want anybody killed. »

At the mayor’s request, the Oakland Police Department launched an investigation into the shooting Thursday. Alameda County District Attorney Tom Orloff, whose office also is investigating, said he probably would decide within two weeks whether to file charges.

Transit police officer Johannes Mehserle was initially placed on paid leave. He resigned from the BART police force Wednesday, but officials say he has refused to speak with the transit agency’s investigators. He has not spoken publicly about the incident.

Mehserle’s attorney, Christopher Miller, declined to comment on the investigations.

Grant’s family has filed a $25 million wrongful-death claim against BART, the San Francisco Bay Area’s commuter rail system, and relatives want Mehserle to be criminally charged.

« They want justice, but they don’t want any more violence, » said John Burris, an attorney for Grant’s family. « That officer hasn’t been prosecuted … That’s why people don’t have confidence in the system right now. »

Local African-American leaders expressed outrage Thursday at the shooting. And some Oakland residents have alleged it was racially motivated. Burris said he does not have any evidence that Grant was shot because he was black.

« There were racial slurs made by other officers to the group that Oscar Grant was with, but I have no evidence that this particular officer directed racial slurs toward Oscar Grant, » Burris said.

BART officials said the agency is trying to conduct a thorough investigation, but that the public appears to be making judgments about the case based on raw video they saw online or on television.

« They see the answer before them playing out over and over on TV, but we have to follow the process and have to turn over evidence to the DA, and the DA decides what to do from there, » said BART spokesman Linton Johnson.

The shooting unfolded in front of dozens of train passengers who were returning home after New Year’s Eve celebrations.

Police officers arrived shortly after midnight on New Year’s Day at the Fruitvale BART station following reports of young men fighting on a train. Grant was one of several who were ordered off the train, questioned and then restrained by Mehserle and other officers.

Videos shot by onlookers show Grant being pushed onto his stomach shortly before Mehserle fired his gun at Grant’s back. The bullet ricocheted off pavement and pierced his lung, killing him.

The video footage has led to debate over whether the officer knowingly shot Grant, as the victim’s family alleges.

Reports of police officers mistaking a handgun for a stun gun are rare, but not unheard of. In 2006, a sheriff’s deputy in Washington state accidentally shot and wounded a disturbed man after mistakenly using his .40-caliber gun instead of his stun gun.

Bruce Siddle, a use-of-force expert who viewed the video clips, theorized that Mehserle was working under stress in a hostile situation and did not realize he was firing his pistol.

« I suspect he thought he was reaching for his Taser, » said Siddle, founder of PPCT Management Systems, an Illinois company that trains law-enforcement officers in the use of force. « If he was under stress, he would not be able to distinguish between a Taser and his firearm. You have video footage that seems to suggest that this officer made a tragic mistake. »

But George Kirkham, a professor of criminology at the Florida State University who also viewed the footage, said he finds that hard to believe because most Taser stun guns do not look or feel like pistols, and the officer fired in a manner consistent with a handgun, not a Taser.

Kirkham, who works as an expert witness in criminal cases, speculated the officer fired because he thought he saw something in Grant’s waistband or pocket that appeared to be a gun or other type of weapon.

« It’s not believable that any officer can mix up a Taser and a firearm, » said Kirkham, who has examined almost 500 police shootings over the past 30 years. « It’s like looking for your steering wheel on the right side of your car rather than the left side. »

Outrage over the shooting has been fueled by raw video clips posted on YouTube and various news Web sites.

Over the past week, video of the shooting has been viewed more than 500,000 times on the Web site of KTVU-TV, which has posted exclusive clips of the incident, said Bill Murray, who manages the station’s Web site. That is about twice as many video views as the site typically sees in a full month.

« Once a story gets national momentum, people want to come to it, » Murray said. « There’s always been a certain voyeurism to online video. I think people want to see for themselves.

Oscar Grant 22 ans

Oakland protest ends as police disperse crowds

sfgate.com

Thursday, January 8, 2009

(01-08) 21:19 PST Oakland — Oakland Police arrested two people tonight and dispersed a crowd of about 100 people at a downtown Oakland demonstration over the fatal shooting of an unarmed man by a BART police officer.

The demonstration, which began around 6 p.m., was about half the size of Wednesday’s, which turned violent as protesters wreaked havoc on downtown.

Tonight, police in riot gear quickly shut down Broadway between 12th and 16th Streets after protesters began stopping cars and buses and threw trash cans into the middle of the street. One woman protested by urinating in the middle of the street. Some protesters carried signs that read, « No justice, no peace. » Others carried candles.

At Walgreens on 14th and Broadway, a protester threw a rock at the window. The window remained intact, but the manager came out, locked the front door and pulled a metal gate around the door and closed early for the night. A Rite-Aid across the street did the same.

By 7:30 p.m. a line of two dozen officers began advancing toward the crowd at 14th and Broadway. A bottle was hurled at the officers, who told people to move to the sidewalk.

« You all better think twice before you shoot an unarmed man, » one man yelled as police advanced.

E-mail Steve Rubenstein at srubenstein@sfchronicle.com

Unrest in Oakland has deep roots in city’s history of race relations

By Patrick May
Mercury News

01/08/2009

Against a cacophony of police choppers overhead, sirens in the distance and jabbering TV reporters, Noah Mitchell sat outside Oakland‘s Kaiser Center on Thursday at lunchtime, filled with both anger and sorrow for the town he has always called home.

« I love Oakland, » he said, as the streets around him teemed with outrage over the New Year’s Day shooting by a BART police officer of an unarmed man. « But it’s a troubled place. And I feel like this city won’t change for long, long time. »

Inside, the BART board of directors sat like a punching bag for a community tirade against perceived police brutality. It was a reaction borne of embers re-ignited by the incident at the Fruitvale BART station, now churning endlessly through the YouTube portal of eyewitness news.

But for Mitchell and others, either those protesting in the streets or supporters cheering them on from their living rooms, the true import of this moment transcends a tragic incident on a train-station platform. Mitchell is barely in his 20s, born and raised in an epicenter of America‘s racial struggles, part African-American, and just black enough to know what it feels like to really love-hate Oakland.

« I once got pulled through the window of my car by an Oakland police officer, » he said in a soft, meek voice. « Ever since, every time I see a police officer, I’m scared it’ll happen again. But it’s more than that. It’s the everyday rudeness, like when I ask for directions, they joke it off, laugh at me, and walk on. »

The lingering protests and scattered nighttime violence downtown this week surprised a lot of people, as if the bold response seemed out of sync with the shooting. But even though the victim was from Hayward, and the incident took place on BART property and involved BART police, the story line for many has moved on — to Oakland

« It’s an accident of geography that the riots took place here and that the focus is now on Oakland, » said Steven Lavoie, longtime city resident and librarian at the Oakland History Room at the main library. « The problems between law enforcement and minority communities are not unique to Oakland. But because of our large minority population, these issues come to a head here

« Oakland, » he said, « is the venue for much larger social problems. And I don’t think the people of the privileged class, of which I’m probably a member, understand the impact of injustice in this community. » The theme of justice came up again and again at the BART board meeting. Looking stunned by the barrage of criticism, the mostly white-male board found itself the lightning rod for a homegrown bitterness 60 years in the making.

« I hope you hear what the community is saying to you, » said Ken Nelson, president of the Richmond branch of the NAACP, one of several speakers calling for a state investigation into the shooting, and imploring the board to improve officer training. « You can’t be quiet anymore. This must be corrected immediately, or we’ll continue to have flare-ups. Your silence means approval. Please do not continue to remain silent. »

Nelson was asking the board to speak out, but he could have been addressing each of the 400,000 people who call Oak Town home. Oakland is and always has been a bifurcated place, with wealthier and whiter residents in the hills, poorer people of color in the flatlands, and each group able to spend entire lifetimes largely confined to one area or the other.

As a crowd of people waited outside the front doors, locked by security officers because the conference room was already packed, local businessman Frank Tucker implored the BART board to seize the moment.

« Right now, you’ve got people down there trying to break down the doors to speak to you today, and nothing’s being done to let them inside, » said Tucker, a board member of the city’s African-American Chamber of Commerce. « This is a metaphor of what’s been happening on a larger scale in Oakland for years. »

Historian Lavoie said you can trace the history of troubled relations between Oakland minorities and police to the 1950s, when the lure of post-World War II jobs brought African-Americans from the South, as well as white Southerners, many of whom would put on uniform and badge.

« The tension that resulted had a lot to do with who was hired, because a lot of the people from the South brought attitudes with them, » he said. « Blacks, but also whites not willing to be as tolerant as Oakland historically had been. »

Lavoie says relations between police and minorities have dramatically improved since the 1960s, when the Black Panthers formed to patrol the streets, ostensibly to police the police. Despite this week’s flare of street violence, « what you should look at is how police responded Wednesday night, versus how they went after peace marchers in the ’60s. There’s a huge difference. »

And BART spokesman Linton Johnson, who said his own aunt had been roughed up by a Los Angeles cop years ago, defended the agency’s police force.

« They care about the public and they’ve done a wonderful job keeping BART safe for everyone, » he said. « There have been only five officer-involved shootings resulting in injury or death in BART’s 36 years. The officers do a hell of a job protecting the public. »

Yet many still see police as intimidating. Oakland native and college student Tahirah Rasheed waved a « STOP POLICE BRUTALITY » placard outside the board meeting, saying « the police are modern-day slave patrollers. » She’s seen the homemade videos of the shooting, which apparently show officer Johannes Mehserle firing his weapon at 22-year-old Oscar Grant III as he lay face-down on the platform. She says she doesn’t need to see anything else.

Those videos, which have been viewed hundreds of thousands of times, are a study in chaos, as the shooting unfolds in front of dozens of train passengers returning home after New Year’s Eve celebrations.

Responding to reports of young men fighting on a train, BART police arrived shortly after midnight, taking Grant and several others off the train for questioning. The images show Grant pushed onto his stomach shortly before Mehserle fired his gun at Grant’s back. The bullet ricocheted off the pavement and pierced his lung.

Fueled by the footage, a debate has raged over whether the officer knowingly shot Grant, as the victim’s family alleges, or may have tragically mistaken his handgun for a stun gun.

But those arguments now seem lost on Rasheed and others who see the incident as part of something much bigger, no matter how much some people feel police relations with Oakland‘s minorities may have improved over the years.

« This shooting, » said Rasheed, « is the culmination of decades of » bad relations between police and citizens. « That BART officer should be arrested and in jail, just like anyone else who shoots somebody. »

Then, like her fellow Oakland native Noah Mitchell, Rasheed starts talking not about the young man killed at the Fruitvale BART station, but about seeing her older brother mistreated by a police officer when she was about 6 years old.

That was 16 years ago. But today, she says, it seems like yesterday.

Contact Patrick May at pmay@mercurynews.com.

More than 100 arrested in Oakland ‘riots’

Thedailyvoice.com

Staff Reporter | Posted January 8, 2009

Protests erupted on the streets of Oakland Wednesday night after a young man killed by a subway police officer was laid to rest, CNN reported.

Twenty two-year-old Oscar Grant was shot and killed on New Year’s Day in a crowded BART train station by 27-year-old Officer Johannes Mehserle.

Mehserle is accused of shooting Grant while he was lying face-down on the station platform. Grant’s death prompted demonstrators to take to the streets Wednesday night, and more than 100 people were arrested by police, according to KCBS-TV.

Officer Mehserle reportedly resigned from his post, which has hampered the police department’s internal investigation because he can no longer be compelled to provide a statement to the department’s investigators, KCBS reported.

Some protesters carried signs reading « Jail Killer Cops, » while others (including some shown in the YouTube video below) angrily confronted Mayor Ron Dellums.

Some demonstrators chanted « No justice, no peace, f*** the police! » and « Pigs go home!, » as shown in one of the videos below.

« People have lost confidence in the process of the investigation, » Dellums acknowledged. He said he had directed the Oakland Police Chief to investigate the homicide and not to treat the case any differently because a police officer is suspected.

Dellums also called on protesters not to use violence to respond to violence. « Screaming and yelling and burning and harming human beings is not what we should be all about, » he said. « I’ve given my whole life to the notion that peace is a superior idea.

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Oakland: Riots In The Streets

Thursday, January 08 2009 @ 01:21 AM CST

Contributed by: Anonymous

A protest was held January 7th at the Fruitvale BART station. Protesters gathered at 3pm and by 5pm the crowd had swelled to around one thousand people. At 6pm some of the protesters started marching down Broadway towards downtown Oakland. Around 6:35 there was a confrontation with a police car and a burning dumpster was shoved into it as people shook and jumped on the car. Hundred of police then moved in, shooting tear gas into the crowd. The protest continued into the night as dozens of protesters took over and blocked the intersection of 14th and Broadway for over an hour with several people lying on the ground to show how Oscar was lying when he was shot. A line of hundreds of riot police then moved in and pushed the crowd up 14th. The crowd pushed back and dozens of car windows were broken and a minivan was set one fire. The police then charged and as protesters dispersed windows were broken on a McDonalds and at least two more cars were set on fire.

Oakland: Riots In The Streets

« Walter Benjamin asked himself how in 1830 the Paris rioters shot at town clocks, in different parts of the city and without coordinating the action; for our part we cannot fail to reflect on why wild youths of today are burning cars. In fact, what does the car represent in contemporary society? We leave the question unanswered. »

Stop protesting.

Start fighting.

A protest was held January 7th at the Fruitvale BART station. Protesters gathered at 3pm and by 5pm the crowd had swelled to around one thousand people. At 6pm some of the protesters started marching down Broadway towards downtown Oakland. Around 6:35 there was a confrontation with a police car and a burning dumpster was shoved into it as people shook and jumped on the car. Hundred of police then moved in, shooting tear gas into the crowd. The protest continued into the night as dozens of protesters took over and blocked the intersection of 14th and Broadway for over an hour with several people lying on the ground to show how Oscar was lying when he was shot. A line of hundreds of riot police then moved in and pushed the crowd up 14th. The crowd pushed back and dozens of car windows were broken and a minivan was set one fire. The police then charged and as protesters dispersed windows were broken on a McDonalds and at least two more cars were set on fire.

8:30pm Two more cars near 14th and Madison are on fire and there have been more arrests.

8:10pm Crowd is dispersing. KPIX helicopter shows windows being smashed in on a McDonalds a block of so away.

8:07pm All cars on one side street have had their windows smashed and a minivan is on fire.

8:05pm Police are dividing crowd and charging at protesters. Several people are being put in police vans. An online feed from kpix.com seems to show police have dragged one person behind a police van and at least 4 police are beating the person with batons .

8:00pm A line of police is moving in and pushing the protesters out of the intersection. Many protesters are pushing back and several car windows are being smashed.

7:45pm Police just ordered the crowd to disperse and have told the crowd that anyone who does not leave the area in 10 minutes will be arrested.

7:40pmDozens of people are still at 14th and Broadway, surrounded by hundreds of police cars and police in riot gear. Several people are lying on the ground in the intersection re-enacting how Oscar Grant was lying when he was shot.

7:10pmPeople are blocking Broadway and 14th chanting “We are Oscar Grant”

7:05pm: 50 or so people now marching back up Broadway towards 13th

6:40pm: Police are using tear gas and rubber bullets on crowd. 12 cops on foot and an armored truck chased people on Broadway towards the freeway.

6:35pm: Reports of people jumping on cop car and dumpster on fire near 7th and Madison

4:00pm: The crowd has swelled to around 300 people. BART has issued an advisory announcing the closure of the Fruitvale station « due to civil protest. » A bus bridge has been established at Coliseum station.

3pm: Protesters have begun to gather at Fruitvale BART.

http://www.indybay.org/

oakland-protest-image

Riots erupt in Oakland after slain father laid to rest

8 janvier 2009

(CNN) — Protests erupted shortly after a young man killed by a subway police officer was laid to rest in Oakland on Wednesday night, according to local media and iReporters.

Footage from CNN affiliate KTVU-TV showed demonstrators rampaging through the streets of Oakland, California, protesting the death of Oscar Grant, a 22-year-old father who was killed on New Year’s Day in a crowded train station.

Some protesters lay on their stomachs, saying they were showing solidarity with Grant, who was shot in the back as he was face-down on the floor at a train station.

Several witnesses caught the incident on camera, and there have been numerous demonstrations this week. The protests turned violent Wednesday night after Grant’s funeral and following an announcement by authorities that Officer Johannes Mehserle, who is accused in the shooting, had turned in his resignation.

Videos from witnesses show Mehserle shoot Grant in the back as another Bay Area Rapid Transit officer kneels on Grant. A BART spokesman has said there is more to the story than what can be seen on the grainy images. VideoWatch the events preceding the shooting »

Oakland police tried to keep protesters at bay Wednesday night as they smashed car windshields and storefront windows. KTVU footage shows one protester jumping up and down on a police car hood, while another demonstrator pushes a flaming Dumpster up against it.

« We live a life of fear, and we want them to be afraid tonight, » an unnamed female protester said.

iReporter Ken Romero took video of a car ablaze down the street from his apartment. « There was some yelling, helicopters above. I saw cops seal off the block, » Romero said. « A few violent people passed through. You could hear them. » iReport.com: BART protests turn violent

David Chai, chief of staff for Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums, said there were about 100 arrests. Chai said he witnessed some of the violence.

« Police had most of it under control, » he said, adding that he did not fear for his safety. « There were people that were jumping on cars and breaking car windows, throwing things. »

Dellums was also « out and about » in the streets Wednesday, urging protesters to exercise their frustration productively, Chai said. Dellums announced that the Oakland Police Department was conducting its own investigation into the matter.

Oakland police did not immediately return calls Thursday seeking comment.

« The mayor’s involvement was essentially to try to calm everybody down, » Chai said. « He obviously expressed some frustration with the process. »

He said Oakland residents also were « rightfully » frustrated that the investigation has gone on for a week with little development.

« The video [of Grant’s shooting] is horrific and begs a lot of questions that need to be answered, » Chai said.

BART spokesman Linton Johnson said Wednesday that Mehserle’s attorney has advised his client not to speak to authorities. BART released a statement Wednesday saying the officer’s attorney and a union representative had handed in his resignation letter.

Mehserle was scheduled to meet with BART investigators Wednesday morning, but he did not appear.

Attorney Christopher Miller released a statement confirming his client’s resignation, effective Wednesday.

« Officer Mehserle’s resignation should allow BART to get back to the business of managing regional transportation and allow the Alameda County district attorney to take primary responsibility for reviewing this matter, » the statement said. « Officer Mehserle has the full support of the BART Police Officers’ Association and we wilt continue to represent him during any review by the office of the district attorney. »

Johnson told CNN on Wednesday that Mehserle had received death threats.

District Attorney Tom Orloff told CNN on Wednesday the incident is a « pretty clear » homicide and his office will focus primarily on Mehserle’s mental state before the shooting.

The Grant family attorney, John Burris, is pushing Orloff to press criminal charges against Mehserle. Burris has also filed a $25 million claim with BART, alleging wrongful death. Read the claim (PDF)

« Without so much as flinching the Officer Mehserle stood over Grant and mercilessly fired his weapon, mortally wounding Mr. Grant with a single gunshot wound to the back, » the claim alleges.

BART has until late February to respond.

Burris said that the young men had been celebrating the new year at a popular waterfront tourist spot, The Embarcadero. They were heading home when police pulled them from the train car about 2 a.m.

Witness videos show Grant and two other men sitting against a wall in the Fruitvale station after being pulled off the train. BART reported that they had received a report of an altercation on the train.

Police are seen putting Grant face-down on the ground. Grant appears to struggle. One of the officers kneels on Grant as another officer stands, tugs at his gun, unholsters it and fires a shot into Grant’s back.

There have been unconfirmed reports that Mehserle may have mistook his gun for a Taser, but Burris is not swayed.

« My view is, this is criminal conduct, period, » he said.

BART Police Chief Gary Gee released a statement this week expressing condolences for Grant’s family and saying the authority is cooperating with Orloff’s office.

A statement Wednesday said BART « will continue to seek and examine all available evidence and will continue its full cooperation with the ongoing independent investigation by the district attorney. »

« This shooting is a tragic event in every respect for all involved, » BART General Manager Dorothy Dugger said in a statement. « We recognize that the family and friends of Oscar Grant are in mourning and we extend our condolence

USA: émeutes après la mort d’un noir par un policier

8 janvier 2009

La bavure, filmée par plusieurs téléphones portables dans le métro d’Oakland (près de San Francisco), a eu lieu la nuit du jour de l’an…

La mort d’Oscar Grant, un jeune Américain noir de 22 ans, tué par un policier, alors qu’il était allongé sur le sol et menotté, le soir de la Saint-Sylvestre, a donné lui hier soir à une nuit d’émeutes à Oakland, non loin de San Fansisco.

La scène, filmée par des dizaines de témoins avec leurs téléphones portables et mis en ligne sur internet, montre une bande de jeunes, arrêtés pas la police ferroviaire dans une station de métro de la ville d’Oakland, à très forte population noire, avant qu’un policier blanc ne sorte une arme de poing et tire dans la tête d’un d’entre eux, sans que celui-ci ne représente une quelconque menace.

La colère est montée peu à peu chez les habitants d’Oakland, convaincus du caractère raciste du crime, sans pour autant que l’on n’assiste à des scènes de violence. Hier, à l’occasion de l’enterrement du jeune homme, le pasteur a appelé les personnes présentes à garder leur calme.

Pourtant, juste après la cérémonie, des jeunes, excédés, s’en sont pris à une voiture de police qui suivait la foule compacte. Les deux policiers ont pu s’enfuir sans être blessés, mais la situation a vite dégénéré après l’arrivée de policiers anti-émeute en renfort.

Telle une trainée de poudre, Oakland s’est embrasée toute la nuit. De nombreuses voitures ont été incendiées, des magasins pillés et des échauffourées avec la police ont eu lieu toute la nuit.

Les manifestants ont demandé que justice soit faite. Plus tôt dans la journée, le policier incriminé, Johannes Mehserle, a démissionné de la police, mais n’a donné aucune explication sur son geste.

Selon les médias américains, il aurait peut être crû dégainer un taser au lieu de son pistolet, et ne pensait donc pas tuer le jeune homme. Reste que l’utilisation d’un taser dans cette situation précise sera bien difficile à expliquer pour son avocat…

Emeutes à Oakland après la mort d’Oscar Grant

08.01.2009

Des affrontements entre manifestants et forces de l’ordre ont éclaté lors d’une marche organisée à la mémoire du jeune noir abattu par un policier alors qu’il était désarmé et maintenu au sol. 105 personnes ont été interpellées.

De violentes émeutes ont éclaté mercredi 7 janvier à Oakland en Californie après la diffusion, dimanche, d’une vidéo montrant un policier abattre Oscar Grant, un jeune noir désarmé et maintenu au sol.

Selon la chaîne de télévision locale KTVU, 105 personnes ont été interpellées dans la nuit de mercredi à jeudi lors des affrontements. Plus tôt dans la journée, plusieurs centaines de personnes s’étaient rassemblées pour une manifestation pacifique.

Une partie du cortège s’est ainsi rendue à la station de métro Fruivale, lieu de la mort d’Oscar Grant le 1er janvier. D’autres manifestants se sont allongé sur le sol, les mains dans le dos, position dans laquelle se trouvait la victime lorsqu’elle a été tuée.

Des petits groupes de manifestants

Mais les organisateurs semblent avoir été débordés par plusieurs groupes de personnes qui ont commencé à insulter les policiers, puis à leur lancer des objets, à briser des vitrines de magasins et à incendier des poubelles.

Les affrontements entre de petits groupes de manifestants éparpillés dans les rues d’Oakland et les policiers ont duré une bonne partie de la nuit. Jeudi matin, la BART, la police des transports de la région, à laquelle appartenait le policier ayant tué Oscar Grant, a annoncé un renforcement de la sécurité sur l’ensemble du réseau.

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~ par Alain Bertho sur 8 janvier 2009.

 
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