The Anaheim Anti-Police Riot, A Love Story

  • Posted on: 22 July 2012
  • By: worker

<table><tr><td>From <a href="">Orch... Pulse</a>

Do we need to start a riot? Ordinarily we focus on the police after they kill someone, but I’m not going to do that. Fuck them. The central figures in this story are the friends, neighbors, and community members that came together and stood up against the latest act of murderous police aggression. This story is about community, specifically a neighborhood filled with people of color (Shout out to the Latino homies). They watched the police kill a man, a member of the community, and their anger swelled as he lay motionless in a grass-covered yard.

Crystal Ventura, a 17-year-old who lives in the neighborhood, said she saw the shooting from about 20 feet away. She said the man had his back to the officer. She said the man was shot in the buttocks area. The man then went down on his knees, and she said he was struck by another bullet in the head. Another officer handcuffed the man who by then was on the ground and not moving, Ventura added. ”They searched his pockets, and there was a hole in his head, and I saw blood on his face,” she said.

Soon anger turned to action. EVERYONE came outside, disturbing the illusion of peace for a little afternoon insurrection.</td><td><img title="Followed by an evening of debauchery and a morning of disapprobation" src=""></td></tr...

Everyone in the community lived that day, if only for a few moments, as if they themselves had the power to stop the police from terrorizing their neighborhood. The key for liberation isn’t protest, but it’s acting as if we already live in the world we want to see. Kids were with their parents, neighbors joined neighbors, and the whole community found themselves in the street together. “If you want real insight into love, participate in a riot”, and love took the streets Saturday afternoon in Anaheim. Love pushed a dumpster and trash can into the street and set them on fire. Love threw rocks and bottles at the police to force them from the neighborhood they had just recklessly shot up. Love is a riot.

For those who believe this moment wasn’t for kids, the children were there when the police burst into the neighborhood while firing the shots that killed a man. I applaud their parents for bringing them out so that their voices could join their community in the struggle to stop the reckless and needless police violence. Children know pain, they know anger, and they know injustice; the insurrection is theirs as well.

Daisy Gonzalez, 16, identified her uncle as the man shot by police .She and others said his name was Manuel Diaz. She said he likely ran away from officers when they approached him because of his past experience with law enforcement. “He (doesn’t) like cops. He never liked them because all they do is harass and arrest anyone,” Gonzalez said after lighting a candle for her uncle. She cursed at the police who were nearby and a police helicopter that hovered above, flashing a spotlight on the neighborhood.

I began with an homage to the community instead of explaining the police misconduct that followed the uprising because the police don’t deserve to be the central figures in this story. This is a love story, and love stories are often tragedies. Upon taking the streets, the police would respond with attack dogs and “less than lethal” bullets. They maimed and wounded anyone in the vicinity, including using an attack dog against a mother holding her baby while standing next to her stroller.

Though their stand lasted less than an afternoon, and it ended with the sting of bites and bullets, their insurrection is not the end of the resistance. It is just the latest moment in a tidal wave of consciousness that threatens to expose the fraudulent underpinnings of this nation’s legal system. The police killing a person of color almost everyday while waging an expensive and pointless “War on Drugs” didn’t save those people in that Colorado theater, yet they spend so much time doing just that. It should be abundantly clear that these reckless cowboys don’t keep us safe. In fact, it turns out that not all police departments “protect” citizens by filling them with bullets. Police in Germany, as in the nation with over 81 million people, only fired 85 bullets directed at people in all of 2011.

According to Germany’s Der Spiegel , German police shot only 85 bullets in all of 2011, a stark reminder that not every country is as gun-crazy as the U.S. of A. As Boing Boing translates , most of those shots weren’t even aimed anyone: “49 warning shots, 36 shots on suspects. 15 persons were injured, 6 were killed.”

However, this insurrection was not without warning; there have been weekly demonstrations at the police-station in honor of those killed by Anaheim police.

Theresa Smith has organized weekly protests outside the police department on Harbor Boulevard with friends and family members, all of whom are demanding answers about what really happened that day. She has encouraged other families affected by officer-involved shootings in Anaheim to join her protest, but, she says, they’ve mostly refused because they fear police retaliation. But after the brutal July 5, 2011, beating death of Kelly Thomasat the hands of Fullerton police officers gave energy to critics of police brutality in Orange County, word has spread about Smith’s crusade.

For the past several weeks, from a dozen to 20 people can be found every Monday evening on the corner of Harbor Boulevard and Broadway Avenue, waving signs and chanting, “Shame on APD!” Corie Cline has been going to the protests for about three months; her brother Joe Whitehouse was killed by Anaheim police in 2007. She brings along her 5-year-old son, who cheerfully joins in the chants, shouting, “Shame on the Anaheim police!” and, echoing the popular Occupy chant, “Whose streets? Our streets!”

The Anaheim police are responsible for six shootings already this year. Justin Hertl, killed by Anaheim police in 2003, is one of the many deaths to catalyze the burgeoning anti-police violence movement.

Justin Hertl was walking his grandmother Barbara Kordiak to her car when he was shot by undercover Anaheim detectives on Nov. 14, 2003, after the police received information about a stolen car, possibly from Hertl’s girlfriend, with whom he had just been fighting. Kordiak alleges that police came up behind her and that one of them yelled, “Gun!” The next thing she knew, three shots had rung out and her grandson was lying on the ground bleeding. A fourth shot, she claims, killed him.

Justin Hertl’s mother and many other community members spoke out at a recent City Council meeting. Jaclyn Conroy, aunt of Justin Hertl shot by Anaheim Police in 2003, listed off over a half dozen individuals shot by Anaheim Police, including the recent fatal shootings of Marcel Cejas, Roscoe Cambridge, David Rayas and Martin Hernandez. There have been six officer-involved shootings by Anaheim Police this year so far. “I have come to you people before begging you, please look into the corruption of the Anaheim Police Department and nothing was done,” she said. “How many bodies have to pile up before someone speaks up? If it were your child, I guarantee you’d be looking into this.”

So the neighborhood at the corner of East La Palma Avenue and Anna Drive did not spontaneously erupt into violence. The people were living on top of a police-fueled powder keg. They had been demonstrating, they went to council meetings, and yet the killing continued. This wanton killing is not necessary and it’s not protecting us. So, they rose up in the name of not just the man shot on Saturday, but the numerous other victims of police brutality. When the young girl cursed at the police as she was retelling the story of her Uncle’s murder, it was love and not hate that fueled her indignation. Love is a force. Last week, a song called “Do We Need to Start A Riot” was released, and the answer for this Anaheim community was yes.


God damn, mother fucking pigs send an attack dog on a crowd with mothers and infants. FUCK DA POLICE.


more like a fucking police state riot.

they're turning poor neighborhoods into open air prisons.

or rather people everywhere better get on it.

Fuck... if only those people would have had the tools to defend themselves. Those pigs really are a bunch of coward brutes... attacking the average poor trailer people.

I know that people fight back with the little they have, just as I probably would, but what those filthy racist pigs deserve is something a lot more violent and painful as retribution.

Another fucking pig killed someone in Anaheim... 2 people killed in 2 day in Anaheim by police

Why isn't the city burning?

this this this this motherfucking this

cause.. white people

My question for you all is you say you are not scared to fight back or whatever, but what are you going to do when Martial Law sets in?

Just asking thats all...

Are you asking historically or attempting to ask us to predict our individual situations in a future event that currently has no context of existing in the present?

Obviously, the answer is we grow further aggressive with a focused attempt to sabotage military power while participating in attempts to demonstrate and riot against Martial Law. This seems like a ridiculous question, perhaps posing implicit doubts on our convictions.

The truth of the matter is that any subversive, regardless of their ideology, has a tendency to behave in such a way as I have suggested and this happens all the time throughout the world when Martial Law has any level of resistance.

"currently has no context of existing in the present?"

Wtf... did your brain stopped processing information like 10 years ago? I suppose that the paramilitary troops in the streets, road check points, TSA control in airport, National Defense Authorization Act, prison camps, drones being fully implemented domestically are just some conspiracy theory or predictions for the distant future?

No. It's all there, right now. Knowing your enemy is halfway into winning against it.

Hyperbole becomes you. Martial law is a particular behavior of the state. If you want to say our society is growing more authoritarian, this is different. You want to see something happen about it? Why aren't you doing it? What are you suggesting be done, since you brought it up?


When are other cities doing solidarity demonstrations? we want to coordinate. Thanks!


The great are great only because we are on our knees. Let us rise!

- Max Stirner

Flaming barricades being set up in Anaheim!

We can't let those people down! Come on, bros/sis, let's attack!

More like come on, cis, lets attack! Manarchist!

Fuck you troll!

Manarchist because of what? Because I'm calling people to go on the offensive? Then stay in your bubble until it becomes a jail cell, or mental hospital.

Don't feed cop trolls.

Live Stream Street Fighting. Starbucks just got the smashy and some shits on fire in the street:

Shit is getting crazy! huge fires everywhere, full blown riot, rock throwing ETC.

generalized revolt. it aint the motherfucking black block manarchists no more.........,.,...

Open revolt, not clandestine action...

Open revolt AND clandestine action.


Attack the fucking Bohemian Grove!

This is where the high capitalist establishment is plotting, right now!

solidarity demos in New Orleans too, right? and Oakland? and Seattle?? and Portland???

come on (A) team. Everyone hates the police. what are you waiting for?


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