Nuestra Comunidad Puede Combatir y Resistir el Abuso Policíaco en los Retenes

Nuestra Comunidad Puede Combatir y Resistir el Abuso Policíaco en los Retenes 

Desde el 2009, hemos visto un aumento en el número de retenes, que en vez de tratar de arrestar a conductores de vehículos manejando bajo la influencia, tratan de confiscar vehículos perteneciendo a conductores sin licencia. Reportes indican que se ha incrementado la incautación de vehículos un 52% en los últimos años resultando en un aumento de siete a diez veces más, en el índice de acorralamiento a comparación a los que son arrestados por conducir bajo la influencia.

 

El Colectivo Todo Poder al Pueblo no aprueba que se maneje imprudentemente, ni mucho menos el conducir bajo la influencia, pero es obvio que los retenes una y otra vez,  generan ganancias que se realizan con la confiscación de autos de los trabajadores-pobres y comunidades migrantes en el Condado de Ventura y alrededor de todo el estado de California.

 

Las pólizas existentes perjudican a nuestra comunidad mientras enriquecen a otros: datos a nivel estatal indican que casi $40 millones en ganancias se han generado en lo que se cobra por la grúa y en el acorralamiento. En Oxnard, también se cobra un cargo adicional de $241 para que los policías den permiso de soltar el vehículo.

 

Debido a que muchos residentes son forzados a pagar más de $1,500 en cargos (rescate) por el decomiso de vehículos por 30 días,  se ven obligados a dejar y perder su vehículo; los cuales son vendidos en subastas. Además, órdenes judiciales o arrestos relacionados a multas no pagadas frecuentemente resultan en detención y encarcelamiento. Para los trabajadores indocumentados, este proceso puede resultar en deportación bajo las colaboraciones “Poli-Migra”, entre el Departamento de Jefe de Policía del Condado de Ventura y el Departamento de Seguridad Nacional-Inmigración y Control de Aduanas (DHS-ICE).

Lucharemos por:

  • Alto al abuso policíaco y robo legalizado de vehículos
  • Alto al decomiso forzado  por 30 días
  • Alto a toda la colaboración entre Migra y Policía
  • Alto a la militarización de nuestra comunidad
  • Derecho a Licencias de Conducir para todos los residentes y migrantes

Nuestra comunidad puede tomar liderazgo en resistir el abuso que se está llevando acabo en los retenes. Las familias trabajadoras no tienen ninguna razón porqué dejarse ser hostigadas en sus propias comunidades para el beneficio de otros; tenemos que exigir que se hagan cambios para terminar este proceso injusto.

Involucrarte! Comuníquese con nosotros.

–          Colectivo Todo Poder al Pueblo

Utiliza tus derechos para organizarte y defender tu comunidad!


 

STATEMENT OF POSITION: Our Community Can Challenge and Resist Police Checkpoint Abuse

STATEMENT OF POSITION: Our Community Can Challenge and Resist Police Checkpoint Abuse

Since 2009 there has been a sharp increase in DUI checkpoints that are less about stopping drunk driving and are more about the impound and legalized theft of vehicles belonging to unlicensed drivers. Vehicle seizures have increased by 52% in the past few years, leading to a seven to ten times higher rate of impoundments versus arrests for driving under the influence.

The Todo Poder al Pueblo Collective does not condone reckless driving or DUI, but it is obvious that the checkpoints are not effective tools against drunk drivers; instead they are meant to generate profits from the theft of vehicles belonging to working-poor and migrante communities in Ventura County and throughout the state of California.

Existing policies damage our community while making others rich: statewide data shows that nearly $40 million in profits have been generated by towing and impound fees alone. In Oxnard, there is an extra $241 charge for the police to release the vehicles taken from us. Forced to pay over $1,500 in fees (ransom) due to the 30-Day Impound hold, many residents are forced to leave their cars in the impound yard, where they are later sold.

Warrants and arrests related to unpaid tickets often lead to incarceration and detention. For undocumented workers, this process can lead to deportation under existing “Poli-Migra” partnerships between the Ventura Sherriff’s Department and the Department of Homeland Security-Immigration and Customs Enforcement (DHS-ICE).

 

We must fight for:

  • An end to police abuse and legalized auto theft

  • An end to the 30-Day Impound
  • An end to all partnerships between Migra and Police
  • An end to the militarization of our community
  • The right to Drivers’ Licenses for all residents & migrantes

 
Our community can take the lead in resisting the abuse taking place at checkpoints.Hard-working families have absolutely no reason to put up with being bullied or harassed in their own neighborhoods for other people’s gain; we have to demand that changes be made to stop this shameful process from continuing.
 
To get involved, please contact us.
 
– The Todo Poder al Pueblo Collective

 

 
 Use your rights to organize and defend your community!

 

Vida Newspaper: Protest against sobriety and driver’s license checkpoint

[since we reject that these are “sobriety checkpoints” which are meant to effectively stop and detain drunk drivers we would like to note that we were not protesting “sobriety” anything!]

[VIDA Newspaper 07/14/11 Oxnard, CA] Protestors were on hand to warn drivers about a sobriety and driver’s license checkpoint on Saturday night when Oxnard police officers screened drivers at the intersection of Channel Islands Boulevard and Dallas Drive, the eastbound lane approaching Rose Avenue

Passing drivers honked in approval and appreciation as members of Todo Poder al Pueblo Collective, lined up on the south side of Channel Islands near Albany Drive, waved cardboard signs warning them of the checkpoint ahead.

“We’re getting lots of thumbs-ups from people saying ‘thank you for doing that,’” said Francisco Romero of Todo Poder.

“It’s a total denial of basic human rights, which is why we’re getting such sympathy from throughout the neighborhood,” Elliot Gabriel, another Todo Poder member, who says this protest was just “the first one of many.”

Romero and Gabriel say police officers are unfairly using DUI checkpoints to seize cars from undocumented immigrants who are also unlicensed drivers. They say drunk driving checkpoints should be used to catch drunk drivers, not licensing violations by undocumented residents.

“They can’t get their vehicle out the next day,” explained Romero, adding that impound fees can range from $30 to $50 a day. “They can’t afford that, so they leave the vehicle and go get another for $300.”

Gabriel said the group is part of a broad coalition of civil rights and immigrant rights activists and lawyers who attended a recent workshop on Assembly Bill 1389, a bill that would change the rules for impounding vehicles. Under current law, police can impound a car or truck for 30 days if a motorist is caught driving without a valid license.

The bill, which is being sponsored in the State Senate by Gil Cedillo (D – Los Angeles) would separate sobriety checkpoints from vehicle inspection checkpoints, making it clearer when cars and trucks may be impounded. The bill passed the Assembly 54-22 on May 27, and now is waiting for approval by the State Senate Public Safety Committee before it goes to the senate floor.

The bill is being opposed by Mothers Against Drunk Driving, the California State Sheriff’s Assn. and other California law enforcement groups.

Oxnard police has expressed concerns about the issue and the perception the community has towards checkpoints and informed they are doing everything in their power not to impound vehicles from people while they continue enforcing the law. Under current law, unlicensed drivers are given time to call someone with a valid driver’s license to drive the car away.

The Channel Islands sobriety checkpoint was one of two held by Oxnard police from 6 p.m. to midnight on Saturday. Another was held in the northbound lanes of Ventura Road at Devonshire Drive.

None of the 828 drivers screened were arrested for drunken driving— but 31 drivers were given tickets for driving license violations. Fourteen of those were for driving without a license and one for driving with a suspended license.

Oxnard Police did not elaborate on what the other 16 tickets were for, but five vehicles were towed and a 46-year-old man was arrested for having drug paraphernalia.

PERIODICO VIDA: PROTESTA EN CONTRA DE RETENES


PROTESTA EN CONTRA DE RETENES
ALERTANA LOS MOTORISTAS: Durante un reten policiaco.

[PERIODICO VIDA 07/14/11 OXNARD, CA] Un grupo de protestantes se hizo presente la noche del sábado pasado para advertir a los conductors sobre un retén que la policía de Oxnard había instalado para identificar a conductores que manejan bajo los efectos del alcohol y aquellos quienes conducen sin licencia.

El retén estaba ubicado en la intersección de Channel Islands Boulevard y Dallas Drive, en el carril con dirección al este hacia Rose Avenue. Conductores que pasaban por el área pitaban a los protestantes como un símbolo de su apoyo y agradecimiento. Los protestantes, los cuales son miembros de Todo Poder al Pueblo, se encontraban en el lado sur de Channel Islands Blvd., cerca de Albany Drive, y mostraban cartels que advertían a los conductors sobre el retén que se encontraba más adelante.

“Estamos recibiendo muchas señales de aprobación de parte de la gente, diciéndonos ‘gracias por hacer eso'”, dijo Francisco Romero, miembro de Todo Poder.

“Es una negación de los derechos humanos básicos, es por eso que estamos recibiendo apoyo de nuestra comunidad”, dijo Elliot Gabriel, otro de los miembros de Todo Poder, quien agregó que la protesta del sábado fue sólo la “primera de muchas” que están por venir.

Romero y Gabriel comentaron que los oficiales de la policía utilizan los retenes anti conductores ebrios para confiscar los vehículos de inmigrantes indocumentados que no tienen licencia de manejar. Ellos dicen que los retenes anti conductores ebrios deben ser utilizados solamente para identificar a quienes manejan bajo los efectos del alcohol y no para otorgar infracciones y multas a los residentes indocumentados.

“Ellos no pueden sacar su vehículo al día siguiente”, explicó Romero, añadiendo que el costo para sacar un vehículo incautado es de entre $30 a $50 dólares al día.”Ellos no pueden asumir tal costo, así que dejan el vehículo ahí y compran otro por $300″.

Gabriel dijo que Todo Poder al Pueblo es parte de una coalición más grande de activistas en pro de los derechos humanos y los derechos de inmigrantes, y abogados que recientemente asistieron a un seminario sobre el Proyecto de Ley 1389 de la Asamblea, el cual cambiaría las reglas para confiscar los vehículos. Bajo la ley actual, la policía puede confiscar un carro o una camioneta por 30 días si el conductor no tiene una licencia de conducir valida.

El proyecto de ley, patrocinado en el Senado del Estado por Gil Cedillo (D-Los Angeles), separaría a los retenes anti conductores ebrios de los retenes de inspección de vehículos, haciendo más claro cuando es que los carros y camionetas podrían ser confiscados. El pasado 27 de mayo, el proyecto de ley fue aprobado por la Asamblea por una votación de 54 contra 22 y ahora esta en espera de ser aprobado por el Comité de Seguridad Pública del Senado Estatal antes de ser enviado al Senado.

Entre quienes se oponen al proyecto de ley se encuentra el grupo Mothers Against Drunk Driving, la Asociación de Alguaciles del Estado de California, entre otros grupos.

La policía de Oxnard ha expresado preocupación sobre el tema y sobre la percepción que la comunidad tiene sobre los retenes, y ha informado que los oficiales harán todo lo posible para evitar confiscar vehículos y seguir enforzando las leyes. Actualmente bajo la ley, las autoridades policíacas le dan la opción a los conductores sin licencia de manejar de llamar a alguien que tenga una licencia valida para venir a recoger el vehículo antes de que sea confiscado.

El retén en Channel Islands Blvd. fue uno de dos retenes que el Departamento de Policía de Oxnard llevó a cabo el sábado de 6 p.m. hasta la media noche. El otro retén estuvo ubicado en los carriles con dirección al norte de Ventura Road en Devonshire Drive.

Ninguno de los 828 conductores inspeccionados la noche del sábado fue arrestado por manejar bajo los efectos del alcohol -aunque 31 conductores recibieron infracciones por violaciones relacionadas a sus licencias de conducir. Catorce de estas infracciones fueron por manejan sin licencia y una más fue por conducir con una licencia suspendida.

El Departamento de Policía de Oxnard no elaboró sobre las otras 16 infracciones, pero cinco vehículos fueron confiscados y un hombre de 46 años de edad fue arrestado por tener objetos para el uso de drogas.

Success: Oxnard Protesters Warn Drivers of Checkpoint

Dozens of community members came out to support our campaign last night. Local residents made their own signs and brought them out to assist in the resistance effort. Our goal of turning away dozens of vehicles from the checkpoints was greeted with strong expressions of thanks from our neighbors in Oxnard.
We are fighting to stop the abuse and profiting off our backs. Again, we do not condone DUI, reckless driving, or driving without insurance, in fact we are fighting at all levels to change the laws that prohibit our community from getting drivers licenses. LICENCIAS Y DOCUMENTOS PARA TODOS!

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Originally posted on the Ventura County Star: http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/jul/08/oxnard-protesters-warn-drivers-of-checkpoint/
All photos by Colectivo Todo Poder al Pueblo Media Operations.



Oxnard protesters warn drivers of checkpointBy John Scheibe

Posted July 8, 2011 at 11:20 p.m.

Checkpoint is on Channel Islands blvd. (Eastbound) right past Statham rd. (in front of Amar Ranch)
Protesters opposed to the impounding of vehicles from unlicensed and low-income drivers turned out at a DUI checkpoint set up by Oxnard police Friday night.

“These are low-income workers who need a vehicle to get back and forth to work,” said Francisco Romero, a member of Todo Poder al Pueblo Collective, a group opposed to the impounding of vehicles by Oxnard police.


In a new release ahead of the protest, the group stated:

“Since 2009, we have seen a sharp increase in DUI checkpoints that have become less about checking for drunk drivers and more about the impounding of vehicles of unlicensed drivers.” 

Romero said protesters would be on hand far enough ahead of the actual DUI checkpoint to warn drivers of the checkpoint so they could take a side street and avoid officers.

The protesters gathered peacefully along Channel Islands Boulevard, said Tom Chronister, an Oxnard police commander.


Sgt. Randey Latimer, who is in charge of Oxnard’s traffic unit, said police warn drivers of the upcoming checkpoint far enough in advance so they can take another route, should they choose to.

Latimer said police do so even though there is no legal requirement that they do this.


“It’s something we’ve chosen to do,” he said as he stood next to a DUI checkpoint along Channel Islands Boulevard in Oxnard on Friday night.

He added that the primary purpose of a checkpoint is not to catch unlicensed drivers but to nab those who are being the wheel while intoxicated. [?? – see below sign]

Oxnard Police “warning” hidden in a dark corner on a blind curve in the road behind the bushes.

“We view this as an effective way to go after drunk drivers,” said Latimer, noting how the number of drunken drivers caught at a checkpoint has steadily decreased over the years.

Whereas police might once find more than 17 drivers found to be driving under the influence when checkpoints first started years ago, Latimer said today they might nab one intoxicated motorist. And this is on a good night.

Ventura Rd. southbound lane (Between Devonshire and Doris)
Police set up the checkpoints thanks in part to a $250,000 annual grant given Oxnard by federal transportation authorities, Latimer said. As part of the grant, police are required to have at least a dozen such checkpoints a year.

Choosing a location for a checkpoint is based on where police have historically found intoxicated drivers, Latimer said.

“We look at historical data,” he said.

The cost of a DUI conviction can easily be more than $10,000, according to Oxnard police. This includes thousands of dollars in legal fees, as well as high car insurance rates and the cost of lost wages and work.

But Romero questioned whether Oxnard police are more interested in nabbing DUI drivers or collecting fees from impounded vehicles, as occurs when an unlicensed driver is caught.

The data shows there has been more than a 50 percent increase in the number of vehicles seized over the past several years from these checkpoints, Romero said.

While his organization does not condone reckless driving or motorists operating a vehicle while under the influence, Romero said his group would continue to protest these checkpoints until a just solution is found for low-income workers who cannot afford the fees of getting an impounded vehicle back, which he said can total thousands of dollars.

© 2011 Ventura County Star.

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Oxnard DUI checkpoints result in 1 arrest, 31 citationsFrom staff reports

Posted July 9, 2011 at 10:14 a.m.


Sobriety checkpoints in Oxnard didn’t result in any arrests for driving under the influence Friday night.

The checkpoints, held on Channel Islands Boulevard at Dallas Drive and Ventura Road at Devonshire Drive, were held from 6 p.m. to midnight. Officers screened 828 drivers and conducted three DUI investigations, according to the report. One 46-year-old man was arrested for possession of paraphernalia used for narcotics, police said.


Officers gave citations to 31 drivers for various driver’s license violations, including 14 for driving without a valid driver’s license and one for driving with a suspended license. Five vehicles were towed from the checkpoints.