Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Anarchist Art Space Raided in LA

LAPD suppresses radical art space

by tu_kuñ(A)'o LA Indymedia Monday, Nov. 17, 2008

Imagine a place where people can come together to exchange
ideas, create art, play music, and otherwise invest in a better
world, starting here and now in Los Angeles. Some LA heads went
beyond imagining and created it. After many hours of hard work and
planning, they finally opened it up to the community to host a hip
hop show, a benefit for next month's anarchist bookfair. The crowd
was mostly young people from a variety of backgrounds and different
parts of the city. Some of us were painting and organizing for the
first Los Angeles Really Really Free Market, but mostly people were
just bobbing their heads to the beats. We were obviously a threat to
the system and the American way of life.

I was inside when all I hear are loud thumps, and then people
yelling. Some people started spreading the word that the cops were
out there trying to break in. It was right about that time I started
hearing the helicopter overhead. We closed the door and started
organizing. "They can't come in here without a warrant. You have the
right to remain silent--and everybody should." Nonetheless there was
some confusion. It seems like someone decided that they needed to
inform the cops that we knew our rights and refused to be
intimidated. They went outside, and people closer to the door said
that they were getting searched.

There was some harassment going on at the door and the cops started
coming in. Some people started finding other ways out, but most of us
just stood our ground. The cops were trying to convince us all to
come out. But mostly we just stayed there. Finally they convinced a
trusted member of the community that if we didn't all come out with
our hands on top of our heads that we were all going to be arrested.
Everyone that was still inside filed out with our hands atop our
heads and were lined up facing the fence across the alley from the

There were about 12 cop cars lining the alley and the adjacent
street. My guess is that there were about 60, maybe 75 of us lined
up. I counted 24 cops, and then a couple of bicycle units showed up.
And the bird was still on the wing, spotlighting us and our spot.
One-by-one, they patted us down. People with bags had them searched.
Once they were sure we weren't armed or doped up (they didn't find
anything on anyone) they sent us to face the wall a little further
down the alley. The one who searched asked me what was going on in
the warehouse. "Just a little hip hop," I said. Meanwhile, the cops
are realizing not everyone filed out obediently and some people are
on the roof of another warehouse. They started yelling at them from
the chopper to get down. Our friends smiled and waved.

The cops didn't seem to know what to do in the face of resistance,
and kept ordering us to keep out hands on our heads, keep quiet, and
keep facing the fence. Eventually they let us put our hands down.
After a while, a sergeant identified himself and ordered us to turn
around and face him. He said that one of us had been accused of
shoplifting and that someone was going to inspect us and identify the

Slowly, a cruiser cruised by, shining bright-ass lights in our faces.
Some people said they thought they saw a camera in there. When they
got to the end of the line, they stopped and started coming back.
They pulled a guy out of line. He looked to be in his early 20s,
Latino, with long hair, dressed pretty metal. They searched him and
took him away.

Some people in the line-up got mad at that guy, buying the pig line
and blaming him for burning the spot. As if someone shoplifting, if
he really did it, was justification of the cops' gross violations of
our rights.

Then the cops pulled two more people, a man and a woman from the
Black Riders, out of the line and took them away. Then they demanded
to speak with the owner of the warehouse, or failing that, the
organizer of the party. "Somebody needs to step up, or..." the cops
threatened. How might things have worked out differently if we all
would've taken one step forward? But only one compañero did. The
sergeant talked to him and about four cops surrounded him. They
talked peaceably for a few minutes, and I heard the pig asking if he
had the keys so he could lock the building up. Then I see them
handcuffing him and taking him away. They didn't say what he was
being charged with.

Next they separated the people who needed to go back in to get
something of theirs, and the cops started taking them in three at a
time. Then they freed everyone who had come by bicycle.
They asked us where we parked, and we all said "around the corner"
and pointed around the corner. Then they let half of us go. Walking
down the alley I could see some of the compañerxs in the cop cars and
still being harassed. And when I got to the street, I saw cops on
foot beside the cars parked there, writing on notepads. They weren't
writing tickets, just writing. "Damn they're getting our plates."
Needless to say, everyone was pissed off and very concerned for our
arrested comrades. And there was the inevitable questioning and
fingerpointing. "Didn't that guy who was here earlier seem a little
suspicious? Is there an informant?"

Well, part of the problem is that we had no real security measures to
speak of. Maybe we didn't feel like we needed them, because
everything we're doing is totally legal. But, knowing the LAPD, and
the general political scene, we should know better.
They're sending a message loud and clear: We know who you are, we
will harass and try to intimidate you, threaten you with criminal
prosecution on trumped-up charges, use force against you, for daring
to associate yourself with the movement. Because right now something
special is going on. There has been anarchism in LA for a long time,
but now we are finally seeing people crossing boundaries, working
together, creating alternatives, creating community, and attracting
crowds of people to peacefully support those same ideas.
We need to remain strong, not believe any pig bullshit that is trying
to drive wedges between us, and strengthen our ties to each other.
The only solution to this problem is community.

Police Raid of Anarchist Event
by johnaimani Monday, Nov. 17, 2008 at 5:35 PM

Last night the at the Revolutionary Autonomous Communities
fundraiser for the Anarchist Bookfair at the food not bombs warehouse
on 6th and Santa Fe was raided by the LAPD. They kicked open the door
and unlawfully entered in to the private space.

Joaquin Cienfuegos, a member of RAC and Copwatch LA Guerrilla chapter
was targeted by the police and pulled out from the space. When folks
inside the space heard what was going on in front they went over to
observe and document what was going on. Joaquin asked why he was
being detained and they told him to "Shut up" and "Do as he's told".
He was handcuffed and searched without his permission. While he was
being searched Joaquin stated loud and clear that he did not consent
to their search and once again asked to please be told why he was
being detained.

While i was at the door way observing what they were doing to the
comrade outside i could see the the street was blocked off and there
were about 12 police cars on 6th street and about 30 or more
Deputies/Depupigs. As we tried to get cameras to document what was
going on the police rushed the door again and i was pulled outside by
4 police officers. They pushed me against the wall and made me place
my hands on top of my head and searched me. I asked the Officer why i
was being detained and he said, "A crime had been committed a few
blocks away and they were going to bring the victim to identify the

As i was pulled out, the folks inside closed the door to prevent the
rush of pigs into the property. They began to kick the door and yell
at the folks inside to get out. Not once did they announce themselves
as the Police Department or why they were there or wanted folks to
exit the show. Police officers were outside making joke;" Do you
smell that? i think its weed, we should go inside and find out", and
"This is some kind of illegal rave or show or what do we call it?".
Clearly unable to choose a reason why they were trying to raid the
space they made up whatever we want.

After i had been searched, a female officer came over and i asked
once again why i was being detained. She stated that this was an
illegal gathering and they wanted to figure it all out. Officers were
walking all over the front in very confused manner having to be told
by other officers to move out of the way. I could see the shadows on the officers behind
me and Joaquin who continued to hold their hands on their weapons
while we were handcuffed with our hands behind our backs.

After the police ignored the request by the owner of the space to
present a search warrant or leave the private property, the comrades
from the Black Liberation Party that were there in part to perform
for the fundraiser exited the building and were immediately detained
and sister Nadia and Kambui were placed in handcuffs and the rest of
the the Black Riders where made to face the wall. The police then
rushed inside and pulled everyone out. They had us right in front of
the space and then made me walk down the blocked as they lined
everyone up against the wall. They pull more than 60 people out from
the space and had them with their hands against their back facing the
wall. They separted the women from the men and began to search

A police officer that searched me came and asked for my ID. They said
they were going to check me for warrants or any priors. He pulled out
my ID and pulled out a card that he began to fill in with all my
personal information. I asked what that card was for but i was not
given an answer. My ID was returned but the card with my information
was kept by them.

After they searched everyone's belongings they lined up all the males
and females and said that this was going to be a line-up and they
were going to bring the the victim of the crime to identify the
perpetrator. When asked what crime (had been committed) an officer
told another brother that they had had a crime committed a few blocks away and some beer
was stolen from a liquor store. When asked why so many officers where
there for stolen beer the officer said, "He didnt know", that they
just felt that whoever committed the crime was in the space.
A police helicopter was circling and made the announcement after
everyone was removed that they were the LAPD. 2 folks from Food Not
Bombs who were in the premise were pulled out and placed in handcuffs.
A police car with 2 Officers in the front and a woman in the back
seat drove by slowly. The officers proceeded to tell people to look
into the light and not look at the car. Everyone said they couldn't
look at the light because it hurt their eyes but the officers from
inside continued to shine the light into people's eyes. As this was
going on, officers continued to line up and make jokes about
"overtime" and the way different folks were dressed. For one officer
in particular he lamented his rookie friend, "was off tonight because
he would have loved to have been a part of this!" As the police car
made its way down the street they stopped and singled out one youth .
He was immediately arrested. They drove back again slowly and
continued to point the light in people's face. My handcuffs were
removed but i was not allowed to leave. i was made to remain facing
the fence with my hands behind my back.

After a police officer from some other car came with a pience of
paper and pointed to Nadia and Kambui from the black Riders
Liberation Part and said they were being detained for "148"-
interfering with a police officer. When people asked why they were
being detained or singled out police officers told them to shut up.
They placed them both in cuffs and removed all their belongings and
put them into plastic bags. They were then placed into the backseat
of a police car.

Another police officer came and then annonced that the party was over
and people needed to leave. People still had equipment inside and
were made to line up and escorted inside to get thier belongings.
While inside i noticed that money from the fundraiser was missing and
according to folks inside the money was there before the police ran
inside to pull everyone out. We got out all the groups' equipment and
waited for someone to come close the space. They continued to harass
people and tried to intimidate many of the youth to leave and to
learn their lesson. Besides the one youth that was arrested for
supposedly stealing beer, everyone was arrested for interfering with
a police officer when all they asked was why they were being detained.
The officers were congragulating themselves and laughing at everyone.
Many of the officers were staring down many of the sisters that were
there and making sexist jokes about he'd rather be home with his wife
than here. Then he proceeded to make a hand gesture to 2 sisters who
were standing near by. No one but the other officers were amused by
these pigs but they continued to talk shit and tell people to leave.
The majority officers left smiling and staring at folks in attempts
to instigate some incident to lead to further arrest.

While we were waiting the final officer drove by and rolled down his
window. He stated" Im sorry we had to shut down your party but you
have to keep the youngsters in check and can't be letting them go
anywhere stealing beer. If they hadn't stolen the beer we wouldnt
have canceled your show"

Everyone was pissed as this provacateur behavior which is being
utilized as the excuse to enter into private property and raid a
peaceful gathering. The police looked for whatever excuse to shut the
show down.

Joaquin is currently being held for misdemeanor . He has not been
taken to jail and is still being held by Central Division. He will
probably be going to court tomorrow or Wednesday. Please spread the
word.Help support Joaquin and the Black Riders Liberation Party and
Food Not Bombs folks to get out.

This is a quick report trying to include as many of the important
details as possible but i'm sure i might have overlooked other
important details from last night that other folks who were also
there can maybe share and i will try and write more about last night
later tonight and will follow up with more details.

Free ALL Political Prisoners.Organize Organize Organize

Anarchist bookfair meeting raided by LAPD
by josh Sunday, Nov. 16, 2008 at 9:52 PM

A meeting and potluck for the upcoming LA Anarchist Bookfair was
raided after police alleged someone stole something from a nearby

A meeting and potluck for the upcoming LA Anarchist Book Fair was
raided after police alleged someone attending had stole something
from a nearby store. LAPD did not offer details on what store or what
was stolen. An officer threatened that non-cooperation with their
investigation could result in a visit to jail.

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