Our Community Can Challenge and Resist
Police Checkpoint Abuse
Since 2009, our communities have witnessed a major increase in the use of Sobriety/Driver’s License checkpoints in our neighborhoods and roads. While these checkpoints are advertised as being meant to “stop drunk driving,” numbers have shown that the actual result is the widespread ticketing and impounding of vehicles belonging to unlicensed (primarily migrante) motorists. Meanwhile, the number of arrests at checkpoints for driving under the influence has been minimal.
The Todo Poder al Pueblo Collective does not condone reckless driving or DUI. However, the checkpoints aren’t a tool against drunk driving, as the police like to claim; Instead, the true purpose of the checkpoint policy is to generate profit from the legalized theft of our vehicles and criminalization of our communities.
Existing policies damage our community while making others rich: statewide data shows that nearly $50 million in profits have been generated through towing and impound fees alone. The Oxnard Police Department, for example, charges a $241 administrative “release” fee for all vehicles. Nearly half of this sum goes into the pocket of the citing police officer, thereby promoting a cash incentive for the seizure of our cars. Meanwhile, towing yards charge fees (ransom) of over $1,500 through the mandatory 30-Day Impound period, leaving many with no choice but to abandon their vehicles, where the cars are then sold by companies who enjoy lucrative contracts with the city.
The tickets, fees, and legal troubles resulting from the checkpoints unfairly penalize and cripple hard-working families, leading to a process that sometimes ends in imprisonment – or even deportation.
We must fight for:
- An end to police abuse & legalized auto theft
- An end to the 30-Day Impound
- An end to all Migra-Police partnerships
- An end to the militarization of our community
- The right to Drivers’ Licenses for all residents!
Our community has every legal right to resist the abuses taking place at checkpoints. Hard-working families have absolutely no reason to put up with being bullied or harassed in our own neighborhoods for other people’s gain. It’s our responsibility to fight back, and demand that this shameful practice be put to an end!
To get involved, please contact us.
– The Todo Poder al Pueblo Collective