Oct. 1: Vigil at CA Institution for Women – No More Deaths!

Prisoner Hunger Strike Solidarity

NO MORE DEATHS!  BRING OUR LOVED ONES HOME, ALIVE!

Please come out to support families & friends who have lost loved ones to the abuse & neglect at CIW state women’s prison in Chino, CA.

Join the families of several young women who recently died in custody for a public vigilat CIW on Saturday, October 1st at 2:30 pm (1:30 pm meet-up nearby). Please RSVP for carpools, directions & prep: ciwvigil@gmail.com.

sayhername

Demand that the State of California, the Corrections Department (CDCR) & CIW be held responsible for the rampant abuse, neglect & deaths in custody.

Demand answers about the premature death of so many young women of color in particular.

Speak out against isolation, abuse & state-sanctioned death!

Rally with us in support of the survival & release of people currently incarcerated at CIW.

Bring our loved ones home, ALIVE!

Organized by the families of Erika Rocha,

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Public defender tells it like it is about Florida Department of Law Enforcement [@fdlepio]

Inviting FDLE to Investigate Officer-Involved Shootings Is Just a PR Move

Chief Assistant Public Defender Gordon Weekes calls it “such a crock of shit they are selling folks… Handing over the Frazier investigation to the FDLE is such a political move,” he explains. “It grants both the sheriff and the state attorney’s office political cover from an angry police union if the investigation turns south. It also allows them to deflect the community’s concerns if the FDLE finds no wrongdoing. The community loses in each situation because the FDLE can’t be held accountable, since they’re not elected.”

via http://www.browardpalmbeach.com/news/inviting-fdle-to-investigate-officer-involved-shootings-is-just-a-pr-move-8098876?utm_source=Newsletters&utm_medium=email


 

Because all that the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) actually does is rubber stamp wrongdoing as something-other-than-wrongdoing, Florida will likely prove to be the most corrupt state in the nation when the countless crocks of shit sold to Floridians in various stages of decomposing are finally counted.

Some of the crocks are very, very old.

For over a century, men got away with abusing and murdering boys at the Florida School for Boys (a/k/a Dozier School for Boys). Some of the the abused are still alive to tell their stories; the “White House Boys” are shown intermittent concern by pubic servants and the media, but that’s as far as the matter ever goes, even though Failure to Keep From Harm is a federal crime.

Thomas Merton was likely writing about universities, but he may as well have been writing about Florida:

“I am willing to admit that some people might live there for years, or even a lifetime, so protected that they never sense the sweet stench of corruption that is all around them … “

The Department of Justice – whose job it is to prosecute Failure to Keep From Harm – is   actively keeping the lids on The Sunshine State’s shit crocks. The DoJ’s holding pattern  invites repetition of crimes that they’ve thus far refused to address, which is Failure to Keep From Harm at the federal level. Loretta Lynch must either change her ways or change employers. And she shouldn’t expect anyone to back down from seeking her prosecution.

Kudos to public defender Gordon Weekes for calling “crock of shit” in an excessive force failure-to-keep-from-harm matter. With over 90,000 attorneys in Florida, one would think that at least few thousand would be as courageous. And one would be wrong.

Dead wrong.

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Update on Level 5 Exoneration Tailspin III – Davontae Sanford, 2016

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Humanitarian Hit Man Vincent Smothers (L) was chiefly responsible for freeing young Davontae Sanford from his despicable frame-up

Reporter George Hunter’s August 17th article for the Detroit News about attorney Robert Slameka – Board: Lawyer who defended Sanford unfit to practice – described Slameka’s history of forgeries and unpaid parking tickets, not just his history of providing woefully inadequate defense counsel to the likes of Eddie Joe Lloyd and Davontae Sanford.

Eddie was mentally challenged, and was easily convinced by Detroit police that a false confession from him would smoke out the real rapist/killer. DNA cleared Eddie, but only after prison wrecked his health, causing his premature death shortly after his exoneration.

Davontae is developmentally delayed, and – although just 14 at the time – was interrogated without a parent present. Like Eddie, Davontae was putty in officers’ hands, and shouldn’t have been, contractually: Eddie’s settlement with the city required Detroit police to record all interrogations. Officers ignored that requirement and recorded only the ridiculous end product of Davontae’s interrogations.

Days after Davontae was falsely convicted in 2008 (because of Slameka’s advice to plead guilty, although innocent), self-professed hit man Vincent Smothers confessed to a role in the homicides that Davontae was framed for and named his accomplice … another hit man, not a half-blind, developmentally impaired child. Smothers’ eight other homicide confessions were prosecuted, but the quadruple hit that Davontae was framed for was ignored. Davontae wasn’t freed until this year … just as the statute of limitations on officer perjuries was expiring.

No lawless public servant faced any consequence for harming Eddie or Davontae, and neither did Robert Slameka. And – according to George Hunter – Slameka hasn’t faced consequences for unpaid tickets and forged documents, either. This gave me a sickening hunch was that there was a second Slameka – a connected Slameka – running interference for Robert. It appears I was right.

I spent some time browsing, and found a January 8, 2005 Detroit News/Detroit Free Press obituary for an Irene Slameka, who had a son named Robert and a granddaughter named Amy.  Facebook turned up an Amy Slameka who appears to be an attorney. Browser searches found an attorney named Amy Slameka employed at the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office from 2001 until at least November of 2011, when an Animal Welfare Institute article about Amy Slameka was posted [https://awionline.org/content/animal-welfare-institute-announces-2011-schweitzer-awards]. The Wayne County Prosecutors Office prosecuted Eddie, Davontae and Vincent, and these years encompass Eddie’s exoneration and compensation settlements with Michigan and Detroit, Davontae’s frame-up and Vincent’s long-ignored confession.

The Animal Welfare Institute article says:

Amy Slameka has been with the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office since January 2001. She has been assigned to the felony trial division for the majority of her career … Amy is an executive member of the Animal Law Section of the State Bar of Michigan, a Character and Fitness Committee Member of the State Bar of Michigan and a board member of the Grosse Pointe Animal Adoption Society …

Of course, if this Amy Slameka is the daughter of the Robert Slameka, glaring conflicts of interests arise not only from Amy working under Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy in the felony trial division, but in Amy’s ties to the State Bar of Michigan, which has always been responsible for determining Robert Slameka’s fate as an attorney – he has made the news for other controversial defense behaviors. Had the Bar addressed Robert Slameka’s impropriety in publicly (and quite falsely) portraying Eddie as guilty, he wouldn’t have been around to so ridiculously represent Davontae, among other things.

Given the national attention devoted to Davontae’s story, including Robert Slameka’s abysmal advice to plead guilty, it’s illogical to believe that Kym Worthy was unaware that she had a staff member named Slameka, just as it’s illogical to believe that the expiration of the statute of limitations on officer perjury had nothing to do with Davontae being freed this year, instead of in 2008.

Based on his initial inaugural promises, not my imagination, I fully expected President Obama to immediately interrupt the predation of the Prison Industrial Complex as well as conviction corruption, but he did nothing for over seven years. Now, he’s eleventh-hour aggrandizing his “legacy” by acting to distance himself from privatized prisons as well granting clemency to those whose harsh sentences were based on unfair laws … Rule of Law convictions, not Color of Law false convictions like Eddie and Davontae’s.

Obama can still order Loretta Lynch to descend on places like Wayne County, Michigan and Brevard County, Florida to file federal Color of Law charges against those who serially engineer frame-ups and labor to keep them intact. But he likely won’t; he’s getting so much good press for taking the easy way out.

Vincent Smothers’ moral compass, fortunately for Davontae Sanford and his family, has been in far better working order over the same time frame, and then some. It wasn’t easy for Vincent to get the attention of the media, and it certainly wasn’t without risk … he hasn’t made any friends in the system that is responsible for his well-being, and likely will be for the rest of his life.

I’m again calling out other Vincent’s; criminals whose moral compasses work better than public servants: If you got away with rape or murder – even if no one is serving your time – step up. If officers or prosecutors tossed your legitimate charges in turn for testifying falsely against someone else, step up.

I’m also issuing a new call out: If you work for public servants who broke laws to achieve convictions, step up; if you’ve heard public servants brag about breaking laws to achieve convictions, step up.

Whether you’re a repentant felon, a troubled public employee or a relative or acquaintance of a rogue public servant, don’t step up abruptly, step up with all due caution. Find advocates who can assist you in clearing your conscience without throwing yourself to the wolves, like the Archangels of Justice. You can contact the organization through their Facebook page [https://www.facebook.com/archangelsofjustice/about/?entry_point=page_nav_about_item&tab=page_info] or call Ira Robins at 414-305-8832. After years of tackling the corrupt criminal justice system on their own dimes, the Archangels can ill afford to continue to work for free, so please expect to pay a bit for their professional help, unless your circumstances are unusually dire and/or danger is imminent.

Patriotism isn’t shedding a tear and waving flags every 11th of September. Patriotism is accepting personal responsibility for helping to make our government work for everyone, every day, everywhere with the only exceptions being legitimate errors … not ambition, malice, apathy, dereliction, incompetence, cronyism or any combination thereof. Just as only you can prevent forest fires, only you can undo public corruption. Step up.

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Rep. Ted Lieu Leads Bipartisan Effort to Postpone Saudi Arms Deal

“The letter was necessary in large part because the arms deal was announced during a Congressional recess, leaving lawmakers just one day once they returned to the Capitol to review, debate, and vote on the proposal, rather than the 30 days they are typically allotted for arms deals. Adding to the urgency of the letter was the recent string of devastating attacks carried out this month by the Saudi-led coalition. Since peace talks between the coalition and Yemen’s Houthi rebels broke down in the first week of August, the coalition bombed a school, a marketplace, a food factory, a hospital supported by Doctors Without Borders, and a bridge vital to the delivery of humanitarian aid, in total killing at least 68 civilians, and injuring many more.”

PEACE ACTION'S GROUNDSWELL

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Today, a group of 64 House representatives sent a bipartisan letter to President Obama asking that he postpone the sale of $1.15 billion worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia until Congress has had a chance to debate and vote on the arms deal. After 17 months of U.S. support for a Saudi-led military intervention in Yemen that’s killed thousands of civilians and fueled violent extremism in the region’s poorest country, a growing number of lawmakers have apparently had enough.

The letter was spearheaded by Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA), who started raising concerns about civilian casualties in Yemen last fall, and has since become one of the loudest opponents in Congress of U.S. support for the war. Alongside Lieu, this  initiative was co-led by Reps. Ted Yoho (R-FL), John Conyers (D-MI), and Mick Mulvaney (R-SC). 

The letter was necessary in large part because the arms deal was announced during a Congressional…

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Grassroots Campaign Has Made Cluster Bombs Unprofitable

“Now that the use, transfer, and manufacturing of cluster bombs has become more stigmatized in the U.S. (as the Pentagon feared would happen if too many representatives supported the amendment to suspend their transfer to Saudi Arabia), the time is ripe to stigmatize them further. Congress and the President can take steps to do just that. Lawmakers should speak out in the media and on the floor of Congress in favor of joining the Convention on Cluster Munitions, and President Obama should commit the U.S. to accede to the convention.”

PEACE ACTION'S GROUNDSWELL

On Tuesday, Textron — the last U.S. weapons company making cluster bombs, a deadly indiscriminate weapon that’s made headlines in the past year for killing and maiming hundreds of civilians in Yemen’s civil war — announced that it will no longer manufacture them. A spokesperson for the company explained their reasoning in business terms:

Historically, sensor-fuzed weapon (a type of cluster bomb) sales have relied on foreign military and direct commercial international customers for which both executive branch and congressional approval is required… The current political environment has made it difficult to obtain these approvals.

Let’s unpack what they meant by “current political environment.” Earlier this year, Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Amnesty International both documented that a U.S.-backed Saudi-led military coalition that intervened in Yemen’s civil war in March 2015 had used U.S.-made cluster bombs on civilian areas of Yemen, use which amounted to war crimes given the…

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Upcoming Hunger Strike: END Solitary Confinement and Inhumane Treatment in Santa Clara Co. Jails

Prisoner Hunger Strike Solidarity

Please read and spread the below statement from people in solitary confinement in Santa Clara County, California, announcing their upcoming hunger strike to begin Oct 17, 2016 and clearly explaining their human and civil rights demands behind the strike. ACT IN SOLIDARITY by sharing the prisoners’ words, putting pressure on the Santa Clara County Sheriff during the strike (phone numbers provided in the statement), writing letters to the editor, and paying attention to further statements from the Prisoner Human Rights Movement in Santa Clara County Jails.

Prisoners’ Statement/Open Letter:

All the respect across the board! Now onto the following at hand.

The following will consist of an open letter addressed to all prisoners contained within all three facilities of Santa Clara County Jail, in regards to a peaceful protest in the form of an
organized hunger strike.

First off, allow us to stress the fact that by no means is this to…

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Letter of Support to Standing Rock: Stop Pipelines, Climate Change, and Capitalism

Oceti7logoJpg.jpg13912667_10157278971710357_4306690732741922695_n.jpgTo support the frontlines Sacred Stone Camp: for general camp support: www.gofundme.com/sacredstonecamp. for legal defense support: https://fundrazr.com/d19fAf.

Brave resisters and water protectors descended on the Dakota Access Pipeline construction site to halt its construction as it lurches towards the Mni Sose, the Missouri River, at Cannonball, ND. The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and the Oceti Sakowin (The Great Sioux Nation) have opposed the pipeline and all pipelines trespassing treaty territory, as defined by the 1851 and 1868 Fort Laramie treaties. The proposed 1,172-mile pipeline would transport Bakken-produced heavy crude oil across the major freshwater source for countless human and nonhuman lives, the Missouri River.

The Red Nation calls on everyone to support resisters and water protectors as they put their lives on the line to halt this devastating wasicu, fat-taker capitalist pipeline. On July 27, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe filed a lawsuit in the District of Columbia…

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