Thursday, September 1, 2011

Modesto CopWatch Update: July & August 2011

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July 1 –The Modesto Bee reports that Stanislaus County sheriffs met with the family of Eric Vigen and gave them details of how he was unarmed when he was shot 55 times with semiautomatic rifles by Sgt. Ian Troxell, and officers Jonathan Box and Adam Percey, all of the California Highway Patrol. Vigen, 37, died June 18th when CHP responded to a report of a suicidal man at the Valero gas station at Crows Landing Road and West Main Street, west of Turlock. “An apology from the CHP would be really nice,” Clint Vigen, Eric’s brother said, “the CHP has had no contact with us to say, ‘We are sorry we killed your son … your brother,’ this is not about money; this is about an apology, some recognition of our loss.”

July 5–Kelly Thomas, a 37 year old homeless man with schizophrenia, was severely beaten by Fullerton police Jay Cicinelli and Manny Ramos after refusing to let them search his backpack. He died a few days later from his injuries. Kelly’s own father, a former cop, expressed that he was ashamed to be a law enforcement officer after what happened to his son.
Kelly Thomas before & after beating

July 16 –San Francisco police officers shoot and kill 19 year old Kenneth Harding after he ran from a $2 MUNI bus fare ticket check. Later police claim Harding shot himself when he tried pull a gun on police, but many witnesses maintain that he was shot down by SFPD.
SFPD stands over Kenneth Hading

July 19 –Nearly 100 community members, friends, and relatives of Ernest Duenez Jr. packed the Manteca City Council meeting and express concerns about the investigation into the shooting of Ernest by MPD officer John Moody on June 8th.

July 22 –Over 100 people marched through the streets of Stockton from the police station to the DA’s office exactly one year after Stockton cops shot and killed 16 year old James Rivera Jr.

July 27 –Almost 100 Stanislaus County Sheriffs and agents from the FBI and Immigration (ICE) raided the 7th Street Flea Market in Modesto as well as a few homes in Mo-town and Stockton, arresting 39 people for selling or possessing counterfeit CDs and DVDs, probation violations, and for being undocumented.

August 11 –Kari Abbey, the Stanislaus County sheriff who shot and killed Rita Elias in September of 2010, has her unusually low bail (for charges of 2nd degree murder, manslaughter, child endangerment, embezzlement, and conspiracy) raised from $300,000 to $1 million. With the money made by the Abbeys and Benny Taylor from being slumlords to stealing from work, from illegal marijuana growing operations to counterfeit money and steroids, Abbey was able to make the new bail and remain free.

August 14 –Almost 200 people gathered at the Lathrop Community Center to celebrate the life of Ernest Duenez Jr. The day included guest speakers, music, BBQ, and discussion on ways to fight police brutality in the central valley.

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