All posts by jasmynecannick

Jamaican contingency to the 2015 Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles.

Inglewood, Calif. Welcomes Jamaica’s Special Olympics Delegation

Jamaican contingency to the 2015 Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles.

Jamaican contingency to the 2015 Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles.

L.A. Clipper Paul Pierce, Reggie Theus and more on hand to welcome Team Jamaica 

Inglewood, Calif. — The City of Inglewood welcomed the 2015 Special Olympics World Games (LA2015) and the Special Olympics Flame of Hope during the final leg of the Law Enforcement Torch Run® (LETR) on Wednesday, July 22.

The Inglewood Police Department carried the Flame of Hope from St. Mary’s Academy in Inglewood to the Fabulous Forum and participated in a Torch Run Ceremony.

Following the LETR Torch Run Ceremony, the City of Inglewood welcomed Jamaica’s Special Olympics delegation to the Special Olympics World Games at a welcoming ceremony also at the Fabulous Forum.

NBA legend Reggie Theus, L.A. Clipper Paul Pierce and Jamaican Honorary Consul Lorna Jackson.

NBA legend Reggie Theus, L.A. Clipper Paul Pierce and Jamaican Honorary Consul Lorna Jackson.

Inglewood is the host town for Jamaica’s delegation of 68 athletes and 18 coaches who will be competing in 10 sports during the World Games including aquatics, open swim, badminton, basketball, football, volleyball and bocce.

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The welcoming ceremony took place at the Fabulous Forum with CBS News sports anchor Jim Hill serving as the Master of Ceremonies. Inglewood’s Mayor James Butts along with representatives from the Special Olympics were on hand to give remarks. Los Angeles Clipper Paul Pierce, NBA legend Reggie Theus, Inglewood resident and 1964 Olympian Marilyn Elaine White, Jr. Olympic Gold Medalist and Record Holder Althea Moses served as Special Olympic Ambassadors to Jamaica’s delegation.

With 6,500 athletes and 2,000 coaches representing 165 countries, along with 30,000 volunteers and an anticipated 500,000 spectators, the 2015 Special Olympics World Games – being staged in Los Angeles July 25 – August 2, 2015 – will be the largest sports and humanitarian event anywhere in the world in 2015, and the single biggest event in Los Angeles since the 1984 Olympic Games.

The 2015 Special Olympics World Games, with the unparalleled spirit, enthusiasm, teamwork, joy and displays of courage and skill that are hallmarks of all Special Olympics events, will feature 25 Olympic-style sports in venues throughout the Los Angeles region. The Opening Ceremony will be held July 25 in the historic Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, site of the 1932 and 1984 Olympic Games.

For more information on the 2015 Special Olympics World Games, including volunteer and sponsorship opportunities, visit LA2015.org and on social with #ReachUpLA on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

ben crump

Attorney Benjamin Crump Asks Black Los Angeles to Attend Sentencing of Cop in Alesia Thomas Case

LAPD Officer Mary O'Callaghan to be sentenced in the assault of Alesia Thomas

LAPD Officer Mary O’Callaghan to be sentenced in the assault of Alesia Thomas

Los Angeles,  Calif.The National Bar Association’s incoming President Benjamin Crump has put out a call to those concerned with police abuse, killings and brutality in Los Angeles to join him Thursday, July 23 at 8:30 a.m. at the Los Angeles County Criminal Courts Building for the sentencing of Los Angeles Police Officer Mary O’Callaghan. Attorney Crump is representing the family in their federal civil rights lawsuit.

The community is asked to gather at Los Angeles Criminal Courts Building at 210 West Temple Street in downtown Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23 at 8:30 a.m. in Department 108 to stand in support of Alesia Thomas’ family and to help make a statement that probation isn’t acceptable for Officer O’Callaghan who many feel should have been charged with felony murder. The NBA reminds those coming to court to avoid any unnecessary interactions with the police by making sure to bring as less as possible into the courthouse.

O’Callaghan was found guilty of felony assault in the 2012 arrest of Alesia Thomas after a jury reached its verdict after two days of deliberations. She had pleaded not guilty to assault under color of authority.

Officers went to arrest Thomas at her home after she left her two children outside a police station.

A dashboard camera in a police cruiser captured Officer O’Callaghan kicking the handcuffed Thomas in the backseat seven times in the groin, abdomen and upper thigh, prosecutors said. Thomas lost consciousness and was pronounced dead at a hospital.

An autopsy found Thomas had cocaine in her system, but the cause of death was listed as undetermined because the struggle couldn’t be excluded as a contributing factor. There were no internal injuries or bruising.

Officer O’Callaghan’s attorney said she never had a complaint against her upheld during her 19 years on the force and had an exemplary record.

O’Callaghan faces a sentence that could range from probation to up to three years behind bars.

This week the NBA is having its 90th Annual Convention in Los Angeles.  The NBA is the nation’s oldest and largest national association of predominantly African-American lawyers, judges, educators and law students.

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Benjamin Crump

Inglewood_31

Inglewood, CA to Host Jamaica Special Olympics Team

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*The Southern California city put on the map by rap legend Mack 10, Inglewood,  will welcome the 2015 Special Olympics World Games (LA2015) and the Special Olympics Flame of Hope on Wednesday, July 22.

The City of Inglewood will welcome Jamaica’s Special Olympics delegation to the Special Olympics World Games at 11 a.m. at a welcoming ceremony also at the Fabulous Forum. Inglewood is the host town for Jamaica’s delegation of 68 athletes and 18 coaches who will be competing in 10 sports during the World Games including aquatics, open swim, badminton, basketball, football, volleyball and bocce.

The welcoming ceremony will take place at the Fabulous Forum with CBS News sports anchor Jim Hill serving as the Master of Ceremonies. Inglewood’s Mayor James Butts along with representatives from the Special Olympics will be in hand to give remarks. Los Angeles Clippers’ Paul Piece, NBA legend Reggie Theus, Inglewood resident and 1964 Olympian Marilyn Elaine White, Jr. Olympic Gold Medalist and Record Holder Althea Moses will all serve as Special Olympic Ambassadors to Jamaica’s delegation. There will be special performances by R&B legends Keith Washington and Chrisette Michele and comedian Red Grant.

The public is invited to come out and cheer on both the City of Inglewood, the 2015 Special Olympics World Games and Jamaica’s delegation.

Inglewood Special Olympics Program-1

jackie lacey1

L.A. District Attorney (Jackie Lacey) Silent on Pressing Charges Against CHP Officer in Video Beating

Marlene Pinnock became a household name when video emerged of a Black woman being repeatedly punched and socked by a white police officer on the side of a freeway.  Her videotaped beating would add to the recent rallying cry by African-Americans nationwide protesting police brutality and the killing of unarmed Black people.

At the time Pinnock was 51-years-old and had been off of her medication to control her bipolar disorder for several months.  She had been walking on the side of a Los Angeles freeway when California Highway Patrol Officer Daniel Andrew came upon her and the rest is history.

In the video you can see Pinnock receive multiple blows to her body and head by Officer Daniel Andrew.

According to court documents made public, Andrew claimed he had pulled a barefoot Pinnock from oncoming traffic and that she resisted by pushing him.  Andrew claimed that he then straddled her on the ground but that she resisted by “kicking her legs, grabbing the officer’s uniform and twisting her body.”

Andrew “struck her in the upper torso and head several times with a closed right fist,” the records say. CHP Commissioner Joseph Farrow and Assistant Commissioner Chris O’Quinnargued that Daniel Andrew’s actions (blows to Pinnock’s face and body) were to “protect her” they said from the slow moving rush hour traffic.

The incident was caught on video by a passing driver and quickly spread on social media and television news receiving millions of views. Once news broke of her beating, the CHP and the County of Los Angeles conspired to hide Pinnock under multiple aliases and hospitals, according to her attorney. While the CHP was less than truthful in the beginning about Ms. Pinnock’s injuries, medical records later revealed that she was hospitalized for a month behind former Officer Andrew’s repeated blows to her head. CHP investigators seized Pinnock’s medical records via a search warrant, according to the Associated Press.

“There was a direct attempt to discredit Ms. Pinnock by the CHP,” said her attorney Caree Harper.  “They wanted to assassinate my client’s character because she had an illness that is suffered by millions of Americans including journalist Jane Pauley.”

It didn’t work.   A federal lawsuit was filed against the CHP in July, 2014, and on September 24, 2014, the case settled. Attorney Caree Harper set precedent by obtaining terms in the actual settlement agreement that dictated the termination of the officers’ employment with the California Highway Patrol. Attorney Harper secured a $1.5 million dollar settlement for her client Marlene Pinnock, most of which was placed in a trust which was in January of this year.   Harper also provided her client with shelter, food, transportation, private medical assistants and basic essentials until the trust was completed.

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LA County DA, Jackie Lacey

Since then attorney Harper along with Black civil rights leaders have been lobbying Los Angeles District Attorney Jackie Lacey to charge Officer Andrew with attempted murder or at the very least felony assault under color of authority.

Under California law, DA Lacey has until July 1, 2015 to bring misdemeanor charges against Officer Andrew and until July 1, 2017 to bring felony charges—included attempted murder or assault.

Lacey, who made history as Los Angeles County’s first Black and first female elected district attorney, has been tight lipped on the Pinnock case instead seemingly choosing to focus on her reelection that is scheduled for 2016.

Lacey, Pinnock’s attorney pointed out, refused to press charged against the police officers involved in the 2012 death ofKendrec McDade, also represented at the time by Harper. McDade, 19, was shot to death on Mar. 24, 2012 when Officers Jeffrey Newlen and Mathew Griffin of the Pasadena Police Department responded to a report of armed theft of a man near a food truck.

Lacey deemed that the officers had acted lawfully when they shot McDade because the police officers reasonable believed that he was armed with a gun based on the information from the 911 call—even though that information was later proven to be false.

“This is a DA who did not obtain Michael Gennaco’s report from the Office of Independent Review’s on the McDade shooting that criticized the officer’s tactics and decisions. Because of Lacey’s decision to take no action, as of March 24, 2015 the statute of limitations expired and those officers can no longer be prosecuted” said attorney Caree Harper.

Ms. Pinnock is currently living in Los Angeles and working with her attorney and community activists to lobby District Attorney Jackie Lacey to press charges against Officer Daniel Andrew before the statute of limitations runs out. Her attorney, Caree Harper, a champion of civil rights and the underserved, continues to be involved in several high profile police misconduct cases including the beating of Clinton Alford by the LAPD, the takedown of a pregnant woman by Barstow police and the recent tragic shooting of Walter DeLeon also by the LAPD on June 19, 2015.

Los Angeles District Attorney Jackie Lacey can be reached by calling (213) 974-3512.

Attorney Caree Harper can be reached at www.careeharper.com.

 

Jasmyne A. Cannick is based in Los Angeles and can be reached at jasmyneonline.com or on Twitter @Jasmyne.

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LA Mayor Garcetti Finally Agrees to Meet with Black Lives Matter Activists (Dramatic Video)

*Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti  offered Tuesday to meet with members of Black Lives Matter Los Angeles, a group that has been calling for the firing of police Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck and two officers who fatally shot an unarmed black man last summer, a mayoral spokesman confirmed Tuesday.

The mayor hopes to meet with the group’s members soon, Garcetti
spokesman Jeff Millman said. The group’s members had been trying to secure a meeting with Garcetti ever since the Los Angeles Police Commission determined June 9 that one of the officers involved in the shooting of 25-year-old Ezell Ford last summer acted improperly, siding against Beck’s assessment that the officer acted correctly.

Black Lives Matter activists earlier this month camped for several days outside Garcetti’s home and attended many of his public appearances, but were unable to obtain a meeting with him. One of those encounters led to a scuffle between activists and police officers, with two members of Black Lives Matter getting arrested.

Garcetti’s offer to meet with members of the group today comes after city attorneys Friday tried unsuccessfully to obtain court orders to prevent the two arrested Black Lives Matter protesters — Evan Bunch and Luz Flores — from coming near Garcetti and Beck.
A second attempt Tuesday to request a stay away order by the City Attorney’s Office — this time to keep Bunch away from Beck — also failed.

Black Lives Matter Los Angeles released a statement saying that while they feel they should not have been forced to chase after the mayor, they “are relieved that (Garcetti) has finally decided to meet with us to discuss police brutality, the killing of Ezell Ford and Los Angeles police Chief Charlie Beck.”

“While Black Lives Matter Los Angeles feels that they should not have had to engage in the type of civic engagement that involved following Mayor Garcetti to various public events including camping out around the clock for 48 hours in front of his home just to get his attention, we are relieved that he has finally decided to meet with us to discuss police brutality, the killing of Ezell Ford and Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck. 

It is unfortunate that before we could get to this point, several members of Black Lives Matter Los Angeles were arrested just for trying to seek a meeting with their Mayor.  It is even more disheartening that the the Mayor choose to use City Attorney Mike Feuer to try and obtain protective orders against members of our group who were merely participating in civic engagement—the very thing the Mayor encouraged Angelenos to do during his campaign for office.

But in the spirit of moving forward, Black Lives Matter Los Angeles will overlook the Mayor sneaking out of the back door of his house and being less than truthful with his reasons for leaving town on the eve of the Board of Police Commissioners Ezell Ford policy ruling in an effort to come to the table to have a real discussion about solutions to police brutality in Los Angeles. 

We look forward to this first conversation with the Mayor. We are optimistic that this is the opening of the front door for the Mayor to engage in greater and more meaningful dialogue with Black Los Angeles on issues relevant to our community.”

Garcetti had assured the public earlier this month that Beck would “enact the appropriate discipline based on what the Police Commission” decided in the fatal police shooting of Ford, but Black Lives Matter activists expressed doubts at the time.

Melina Abdullah, an activist with Black Lives Matter, told City News Service after the commission decision that she does not trust a process that allows Beck — who had determined the officers acted properly — to be the one who metes out discipline against the officers.

“What we want is for Chief Beck to fire Antonio Villegas and Sharlton Wampler,” Abdullah said. “If he refused to do that, we also want Beck gone. We want him fired.”

Compton Mayor Aja Brown

Compton Mayor Invites Submissions for ‘Compton Champions’ Awards

Compton, CA – Ahead of the State of the City Address on July 10, Compton Mayor Aja Brown today released a video on social media inviting the public to submit nominations for the first annual Compton Champions Awards.

“The goal of the awards is to honor everyday Compton Champions,” says Mayor Brown. “The Compton Champions Awards gives us the opportunity to highlight, recognize and express appreciation for everyday leaders and heroes. Compton Champions will honor parents, neighbors, employees, teachers, students and others for their commitment to the service to others in the great city of Compton.”

Nominations are being accepted in the form of 15-second videos on social media tagged with #ComptonChampions or #ComptonSOTC.

The winners of the awards will be highlighted first during the State of the City set for July 10 at the Douglas F. Dollarhide Community Center and throughout the year.

The Mayor’s video invitation can be accessed and viewed here: https://vimeo.com/131742667.

Known as the “Hub City” for its unique position in almost the exact geographical center of Los Angeles County, Compton is a city of just under 100,000 that covers approximately 10.2 square miles. Compton is strategically located along the Alameda Corridor, a passageway of 25 percent of all U.S. waterborne international trade. The City is known for being home to several booming industries, among them transit and distribution, high technology, home and lifestyle products, metals, financial services, and textile manufacturing.

For more information, please visit www.ComptonCity.org. Follow the City of Compton on Twitter at @ComptonCityHall, Instagram at @ComptonCityHall and on Facebook at Facebook.com/ComptonCityCA. Now trending at #myCompton.