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Police Response Underscores Racism

April 21, 2002

Re "Protesters Allege Placentia Police Abuse," April 9:

Commenting on a protest held by community activists against police abuse, Placentia Police Sgt. Eric Point claims protesters surrounded a police car, adding that, "I don't know what their intentions were."

I was at the protest and saw what really happened. When an officer stopped his car at a red light, about six protesters entered the crosswalk and stood in front of the police car, chanting, "No justice, no peace." They went back onto the sidewalk before the light changed so they would not be in the street blocking traffic. None of the protesters even left the crosswalk zone.

Point's comments are evidence of the blatant racism in the Placentia Police Department that activists are fighting to end. It's doubtful Point would have made the same comments about peaceful protesters had they been white.

Implying that protesters who are people of color have some other negative intention is exactly what perpetuates the endless cycle of violence and discrimination Placentia residents face at the hands of a racist police department.

Mercedes Luna

Placentia

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