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BART shooting demonstrators in Hayward on Friday

By Eric Kurhi
Thursday, February 26th, 2009 at 7:56 pm in Alameda County, Crime, General, Hayward, Odds & Ends, Other unincorporated areas, Politics, Transportation.

UPDATE: The march was a peaceful event, as reported on Saturday. The family of Oscar Grant sent this note to city and police officials to thank them for their professionalism:

“We the family of Oscar Grant would like to thank the mayor of Hayward for allowing the peaceful march and celebration of Oscar Grant’s birthday.

His death has awakened this community to the needs of all the citizens. Through injustice and tragedy our great nation was founded. We can now see that there is a problem in the BART system. Working together, we, the people (the Legislature, BART and the citizens) can change what is needed to change.

We would also like to thank the businesses of Hayward and the patrons of those businesses who were affected by the march. We are sorry for any inconvenience it may have caused.

To all the police officers that were there: Thank you. Your professionalism in the march and at the rally was greatly appreciated.

Saying ‘thank you’ is such a small thing but that is all we the family of Oscar Grant have to give.”

 

There will be a rally and march by friends, family and supporters of Oscar Grant beginning at 4:30 p.m. Friday at the Hayward BART station. The demonstrators reiterated a list of demands on Thursday, among them calling for BART officer Johannes Mehserle – who shot and killed Grant at the Fruitvale BART station just after New Year’s — to return to jail. Police say they’ve been talking with Grant’s family, and everyone is hopeful that the protest goes off without any ugliness. They did, however, send an officer around the downtown area to alert merchants about what’s going on, and will have extra officers in the area during the march. Press release from organizers of the march is after the jump.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Email Address: nojusticenobart@gmail.com

Website: nojusticenobart.blogspot.com/

Oscar Grant Protesters to Shut Down BART

Oakland, CA— On February 26, 2009 at 4:30pm at the Fruitvale BART Station, No Justice No BART will hold a press conference to announce that on Thursday, March 5, 2009 we will shut down the Fruitvale BART Station during the evening rush hours. 

No Justice No BART is a campaign of protest actions targeting BART in order to advance community demands in the wake of the police murder of Oscar Grant.

It has been two months to the day since BART police murdered Oscar Grant and there has been no progress holding anyone at BART accountable.  Therefore, we have no confidence that BART as an institution is making an honest effort to respond to community concerns.

In the interest of accountability and justice, the people involved in Oscar Grant’s murder and the attempts to cover it up must be held responsible for their actions.  Furthermore, immediate measures must be taken to ensure that BART police can never kill again.

Until our demands are met we will hold weekly actions that disrupt BART’s ability to conduct business as usual.  These demands are: 

1. A full, competent, successful prosecution and conviction of former BART police officer Johannes Mehserle.

2. An independent investigation of the other BART officers present during Oscar’s murder!  Each individual officer involved must be named, along with a list of possible or probable violations of police policy and procedure, as well as any potential criminal liability.   Upon completion of the investigation, all officers suspected of procedural violations must be fired immediately, and any officers suspected of criminal wrongdoing must be fully charged and prosecuted by the District Attorney.

3. Suspension of all officers present during Oscar Grant’s murder, for the duration of any investigations into their conduct.

4. BART employees who are already known to have engaged in cover-ups, procedural wrongdoing, and abuse of authority must resign, or be fired immediately.  This includes:
- BART Police Officer Tony Pirone, who was videotaped violently assaulting Oscar Grant prior to his murder, as well as participating in the cover-up that followed.

6. The BART Board must abolish the BART Police, fully divesting BART of any police power over the communities it serves!

- BART Police Chief Gary Gee, who attempted to cover-up the murder, and who has repeatedly failed to protect both the public and the public interest.

- BART General Manager Dorothy Dugger, who has failed in her role as supervisor of the BART police, and is complicit in the cover-up of Oscar Grant’s murder.

7. Protesters arrested during mobilizations for justice for Oscar Grant must be released immediately and all charges against them must be dropped.

8. Tom Orloff must resign as District Attorney before March 14th or we will begin his recall!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • qodrn

    This is really starting to get dangerous. I hope noone gets hurt. While most of their demands are understandable, and BART did not handle this at all well, I don’t think more injuries and possibly hurting commuters is the answer. Is this what Mr. Grant would want?

  • philip black

    I was truly saddened by the way Hayward PD and city officials handled Oscar Grant’s birthday celebration last Friday. Here is a family and a community who is truly devastated by the loss of their son, our own Hayward son, at the hands of the police. This was a moment to bring if not closure, then possibly an opportunity to offer some healing and understanding between police and the community.

    Mayor Sweeney should have been at City Hall offering Grant’s mother the key to the city, proclaiming February 27 as “Oscar Grant Day”. After all, February is black history month. Police Chief Ace could have issued a statement acknowledging sorrow for the death of her son, reassuring the public that Oscar did not die in vain, and that Hayward police are training, and meeting with people in the community in an attempt to learn from tragic events like this, and get it right.

    Instead, they shrunk away from this great opportunity to reach out. Resorting to the same myopic thinking and police tactics that attributed to Grants death. Taking preemptive measures, intimidating these marchers by closing the in a military style police state, blocking the streets with club wielding police clad in armor.

    Instead of using intelligence and compassion, they used force. Instead of offering a hand, they raised their clubs. It’s as if the Gettysburg address didn’t happen. I watched sorrowfully as Grants mother, Wanda Johnson was denied access to a downtown public sidewalk by one of these clubs wielding amour clad Hayward police officers.

    Did that officer know her son was shot in the back by a police officer just like him, while another officer pinned him down to the ground with a knee to his head? It was too obvious that he didn’t care, because the Hayward Police Department and the city didn’t care. I shake my head at this arrogance. I thought we were so much farther along.

  • J. W. Kyle

    Would someone please explain to me, those actions of young Mr. Grant, occurring on the Bart Train which precipitated his being singled out as a person of interest in the reported ruckus between two groups on the Bart Train?

    Was this particular individual part of the Grant family which once lived in the Longwood area and of which family one could observe the family member who went by the street name of “Boo” and whose escapades ended with self inflicted death by gunshot, ending his life at 16 years of age?

    I do not excuse the officer’s use of his gun but the tone of the “message” left above sure lacks a sense of justice when the demand is for his …. immediate trial, conviction and sentencing… or else.

    Give our justice syetem a break… innocent until proven guilty at conclusion of the trial…. not before it starts.

  • TheVoice

    First,
    The Daily Review should have made the eloquent letter from the Grant family on the front page or in larger print somewhere other than the Letters to the editor section in the back. Lets get things together Review, social responsibility.
    Second:
    The request attached to the next protest has some points that are inciting,( the term murder) this was a killing, wrong-yes, but let the courts decide his fate. To abolish the BART police would put the commuters safety in jeopardy as well as there vehicles and allow free reign from criminal intent.
    Last:
    To drop charges for law breakers, vandals, arsonists, and other avenues of criminal behavior is just plan ridiculous and shows the mindset of part of the organizers of these protests. Free criminal reign with no penalties. Practice what you preach.

  • Kim Santos

    The Review does not print letters anywhere other than the Letters to the Editor section. Nor does the Review grant anyone more priveleges than anyone else. It is not up to anyone to determine what reader opinion is “more important” than any other. They are all important.

  • cwbyht

    Philip Black suggests Hayward honor a man who broke its laws, and terrorized its streets?

    Such an honor is reserved for those who make outstanding and distinct contributions to the community Mr. Black.

    You are living outide the realm of reality.