Los Angeles sheriff deputies frequently harass the families of people they have killed, including taunting them at vigils, parking outside their homes, and following them and pulling them over for no reason, according to a new report:

theguardian.com/us-news/2021/m…
The families of Paul Rea, 18-year-old killed during a traffic stop, and Anthony Vargas, 21-year-old shot 13 times, describe constant harassment by LASD deputies when gathering to grieve and honor their loved ones -- mocking, taunting, threats, stops + searches, arrests + more:
LASD has driven by the Paul Rea memorial and filmed his 14-year-old sister, according to the report. At one point LASD responded with helicopters and patrol cars when seven family members, including Paul's grandma, were visiting the memorial to drop off a cross:
LASD also arrested his sister Jaylene at the memorial + took her to jail for the night. They cited her for "obstruction of justice" after officers were arresting a friend who handed Jaylene an extinguished blunt. Jaylene had given her first protest speech earlier that day.
LASD pulled over Paul's mother Leah + her daughter Janae (15 yo) for alleged seatbelt violation, making them sit in back of a patrol car for 45 mins. Leah said she told deputies, “Please don’t kill my daughter.” Leah was cited for expired tags. Jaylene was later pulled over too
The same deputy has shown up twice on the family gatherings for anniversary of Anthony Vargas's death, both times threatening to issue parking tickets despite them not illegally parking, the report says. Anthony's mom said she was followed home by LASD after one memorial visit.
“It’s like they have nothing to do but harass families,” Charles Twyman, Ryan Twyman's father, told me. “You never know when they're going to act out. Everyday in the news we see somebody is getting pulled over and harassed and shot, and we never know when that is going to be us"
I personally witnessed three LASD cars slowly drive by a small family vigil + gathering for Paul Rea last year. The deputies briefly stopped by, leading to a lot of anger + fear among the friends + family gathering. Photographer @DamonCasarez who was with me that day captured it:
Stephanie Luna, Anthony's aunt, said she would continue protesting: “We’re not going away. We’re not going to be intimidated. We’re not going to be silent.”
full report here: aclusocal.org/sites/default/…

LASD declined to comment.
thread from @andreskwon at the @ACLU_SoCal who has been advocating for these families for years and directly witnessed some of these encounters

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More from @SamTLevin

3 May
NEW: Tien Pham, 38, was deported by Biden and separated from his family after decades in California.

“America is my home. My family, my loved ones, my friends, they are all there,” he told me from Ho Chi Minh City.

(Thread)

theguardian.com/us-news/2021/m…
Tien is a Vietnamese refugee whose family fled violence + resettled in the US when he was 13 years old. He was prioritized for deportation by the Biden administration due to an old teenage conviction.

He is one of thousands of people who have been deported by Biden.
Tien grew up in the aftermath of the Vietnam war. His father had served in the South Vietnamese army alongside the US, and ended up imprisoned in a “re-education” camp where he was forced to work and ate rodents to survive. Tien faced severe violence in Ho Chi Minh City as a kid.
Read 20 tweets
27 Apr
There are many police killings with similarities to the George Floyd murder that receive almost no attention. Last year, LAPD killed Daniel Rivera, with officers holding him largely face down on the ground for roughly 7 minutes. He was unarmed and in distress. (thread)
On 8/14/20, LAPD was responding to reports of an alleged burglary attempt + came upon Daniel, 37, who was standing near a ravine in Arleta. He hopped a fence into the wash + may have fallen / was lying on the ground, largely not moving, as police approached, body cam video shows
Even though he was unarmed and not moving, and had his hands behind his head, one officer kneeled on his back, two others handcuffed him, one shoved his face into the ground, and another shocked him with a Taser four times, causing his body to convulse.
Read 10 tweets
30 Mar
NEW: I interviewed trans kids across the US about the Republican bills targeting their rights. Many have faced these attacks for years and are now seeing the bills become law.

Here are some of their stories (thread) ⬇️

theguardian.com/us-news/2021/m…
Wyatt, 14, South Dakota, is banned from using the boys bathroom. He has to walk across the school to get to the single-stall staff restroom: "This is a basic human need ... I’ve asked my guy friends if they’d be uncomfortable if I was in the boys’ restroom. They wouldn’t."
Wyatt has faced anti-trans bills since he was 11: "As a 14-year-old, I shouldn’t have to worry about my rights being taken away. I should not have to go out of my way to make other people happy. I’m not a problem to society. I just hope by the time I’m 18, things are better."
Read 15 tweets
28 Jan
NEWS: Bounchan Keola, the incarcerated firefighter who California sent to ICE for deportation, is free after 22 years.

He was released from ICE custody yesterday and is now reuniting with his family for the first time in decades: Image
When Boun was working as an incarcerated firefighter last fall, he suffered a near-death injury.

He had two weeks left of his sentence at the time, but California transferred him to ICE instead of releasing him to his family. My story from November:

theguardian.com/us-news/2020/n…
Boun, 39, has been incarcerated since age 16. If California had not reported him to ICE, he would've gone home last year to his family and received medical treatment for his firefighting injuries.

Instead, he's been stuck in ICE jail, threatened with deportation to Laos.
Read 12 tweets
12 Jan
I spent time inside a South LA hospital with the highest rate of Covid patients in the region – the epicenter of the epicenter of America's out-of-control pandemic.

Here's what I saw + heard from frontline staff battling the catastrophic surge. THREAD:

theguardian.com/us-news/2021/j…
Entire families are hospitalized – husbands and wives, twin brothers in their 20s, parents and their children. Anahiz Correa, ICU nurse manager, recounted a mother and son who ended up dying in the same ICU room weeks apart. "The patients are much sicker and it’s not clear why.”
Martin Luther King Jr Community Hospital has put beds in an old gift shop, which has a small sign on the door indicating “patient care in progress.” The chapel around the corner is filled with gurneys. Patients are treated in the waiting room + doubled up in spaces meant for one.
Read 23 tweets
17 Dec 20
A short thread on the California prison system's Covid catastrophe + vaccine access:

Advocates + experts are arguing that CDCR must urgently make vaccines available to incarcerated people, mandate vaccines for guards, AND do mass releases of elderly/vulnerable. Here's why ⬇️
CDCR has a long history of severe medical neglect + abuse, including experimenting on incarcerated people. Some will likely be reluctant or scared to take a vaccine. This mistrust is compounded by the fact that CDCR has spread Covid across the system, infecting 31,000+ people.
Incarcerated people in CA have witnessed CDCR’s botched Covid response, which has allowed guards to bring Covid to every single prison, leading to mass and worsening outbreaks and 104 deaths. So why would people inside trust a vaccine? says @jamesking0314:
Read 11 tweets

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