Update: This is footage from the rally just before yesterday (May 27th hearing) in which a temporary injunction was issued…
Today at 2Pm a hearing will be held at the Oakland Courthouse to see if the City of Oakland should have a gang injunction. There will be a rally at 12:30 opposing the injunction in front of the court house
.This measure is being pushed by the City attorney John Russo who doesn’t exactly have the most exemplary record in town. Translation, many feel dude is shady. He’s trying to push an Oakland version of Arizona’s racial profiling law..which is what gang injunctions ultimately wind up doing.. How about getting competent officers on the streets who respect the community and know’ the residents of that community? Can we do something like that?
What’s even more shady than this proposed gang injunction which seems to be motivated by extra money coming into police coffers more than granting us safe neighborhoods, is that this gang injunction won’t apply to the city’s biggest gang. Many feel an injunction needs to handed down to out of control members our police department. And before folks start making excuses and rushing to their defense, take a look at this video showcasing their behavior the other night.. Members of the department decided to handle business by throwing blows and acting a fool at a boxing match in Sacramento.. and we wonder why are kids are out of wack. If those who we pay to protect and serve act a fool, what do we expect the rest of us to do.?
Something to ponder
Oakland PD banned from police boxing matches after melee Friday night
By Mike Taugher
A boxing match for law enforcement officers turned chaotic when supporters of an Oakland Police Department fighter escalated trash-talking into what turned into a shouting and shoving match that involved dozens of spectators.
Fight fans and organizers were harshly critical of off-duty Oakland police at the Sacramento Radisson during Friday night’s “Badge vs. Badge” fights, and while fans said they were unsure whether those rooting for Oakland police fighters were officers or simply friends and relatives, event organizers said the troublemakers were police.
As a result of the fracas, Oakland police officers are banned from fights sanctioned by the International Association of Boxing until a review of video footage is complete, said Steve Fosum, the association’s president.
“It was totally instigated by Oakland PD, no doubt in my mind,” said Fosum, who was in the ring Friday night. “They chose to be jerks instead of law enforcement. This was not an embarrassment to Badge versus Badge. This was not an embarrassment to law enforcement. This was an embarrassment to Oakland PD.”
According to organizers and witnesses, the fights went off without a hitch until the end of the main event, a heavyweight title bout between Larry “Psycho” Ward, who works at the California Medical Facility, a state prison in Vacaville, and Casey Johnson, a police officer in Oakland.
A section with a few dozen supporters of Oakland fighters — there were three fighters from the department on the fight card — were particularly loud and taunted Ward throughout the night, according to Fosum and others.
After Ward and Johnson fought, Ward returned to his corner, which happened to be near where the Oakland fans were sitting.
Fight promoter Tom Gaffney said he took out a second mortgage and spent five years planning the event. He said three fans stood up and started yelling and pointing at Ward and things quickly got out of control.
Witnesses said no punches were thrown but there was a lot of yelling as well as some pushing and shoving. About 10 people were at the center of the action, either shoving each other or trying to pull antagonists apart, Gaffney said.
A YouTube video of the skirmish shows dozens of spectators scuffling. The scene includes a tossed chair.
Gaffney said he was told the three fans who started the disturbance were Oakland police officers and that at least one of them served on the SWAT unit. He said Johnson apologized to Gaffney after the fight and confirmed they were from his department.
“He was embarrassed. I said, ‘Man, you work with those guys?’ He said, ‘Yeah,’ ” Gaffney said.
“I was shocked,” he added.
“I didn’t think they were officers, the way they were acting.”
Johnson told Gaffney that the three apologized to Johnson for their behavior.
When contacted Saturday evening, Oakland’s brass said they were unaware of the incident but promised they would investigate.
“Any time we are in the public eye, we need to conduct ourselves in a professional manner,” Oakland police spokesman Officer Jeff Thomason said. “At this time there is not enough information to comment on what may or may not have happened last night, but we will conduct our own internal investigation.”
Oakland mayoral spokesman Paul Rose expressed confidence the department would handle the incident properly.
“We are going to work with the Police Department to investigate the matter and the mayor is confident that the chief is going to deal with this matter appropriately,” Rose said.
An Oakland police officer who was at the fight, but who did not want to be identified, said Ward started it by making a throat-slashing gesture toward the Oakland fans.
The officer said Ward came out of the ring, but another fan said Ward simply opened up the ropes and invited his taunters into the ring. The Oakland officer said his colleagues were only defending themselves after Ward taunted them and backers of the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation confronted them.
Fosum said he would not have blamed Ward, whom he described as cocky, for parting the ropes, though he did not see that happen.
“I guess they wanted to be a tough guy,” Fosum said. “Whenever I see stuff like that, I think, if you guys really thought you were tough, you have a chance to be in the ring. All they did was heckle.”
A Sacramento-area police officer called the incident “a disrespect to the badge.”
The officer did not want to be identified.
“I don’t want to tell on my brothers,” he said. “On the other hand, I think they should be held accountable.”
Although a couple of witnesses said they thought there were more fights on the card, Fosum said the heavyweight bout was the last of the night.
Alcohol was served at the fights, but Fosum said he thought it was passions in support of their fighter and not alcohol that fueled the raucous behavior.