Police raid house in East Vancouver, with guns drawn, on pretext of anti-pipeline graffiti

Note: The Editor of this blog, Copwatch Vancouver, was also subject to this gang style early morning raid on their home, and who was not named in the warrant but who’s laptop computer, cell phone & charger, USB’s, iPod & cord, personal & political documents were also stolen by the Vancouver Police. Donations can be made here for legal fees & to replace the stolen items. http://www.gofundme.com/9x8eyk

by Zig Zag, Warrior Publications, June 3, 2014no-pipelines-graffiti-2

At around 9AM on June 3, 2014,approximately 16 cops from the Vancouver Police Department raided a house in East Vancouver under the pretext of investigating six mischief charges related to graffiti tags dating from June, July, and October of 2013. The four residents of the house, and one guest, were removed one by one by police aiming pistols at them. One person inside the house looked out their bedroom window and saw a cop pointing his pistol at him. The house targeted by the raid is comprised of radicals involved in Indigenous resistance as well as anarchist projects in the city (including myself, the editor of the Warrior Publications wordpress site) Once removed from the house, the five people were placed in a prisoner transport van parked out front while a K9 team entered the house to search for any remaining people. After the K9 team searched the house, a forensic identification unit with a video camera appeared. They first filmed the exterior of the house and the yard, then entered the house itself. After filming the interior, they then used a camera to take photos. At around 11AM, all but one of the five persons detained were released. The last person held was told he would be charged with 6 counts of mischief under $5000 and taken away in the prisoner transport van. Those released were told to leave the area and that police would contact them once the search was over. The individual arrested was taken to the downtown Vancouver jail where cops from the Integrated Graffiti Task Force attempted to interrogate him. They mentioned spray painted tags and anti-pipeline graffiti. At around 3:30PM he was released without charges, although told that the investigation was ongoing and that charges could still be laid. At around 6PM, police informed the residents that the search had been completed. At this time, the warrant for the search was found in the kitchen, naming the target of the raid as well as a list of items referred to as “graffiti vandalism paraphernalia.” This included paint, spray paint, markers, paint markers, latex or rubber gloves, painter’s masks, glass etching kits, books with graffiti images, notepads or paper with images or graffiti, any computer electronic storage devices such as USB’s or external hard drives, camera, film or any digital storage cards, photographs, pictures (such as canvas), video tapes or DVD that may contain graffiti, cell phones with the ability to take photographs or video, a particular coloured baseball cap, black knapsack and black hoody, dark jeans, plus “forensic examination and recovery of data to determine ownership and use, including… contact lists, text messages, emails, call logs, video and photos from any computers, cell phones or electronic storage devices.” The main items taken during the raid were laptop computers, USBs, and cell phones. A collection of political zines and some banners were also taken, along with a video camera and a black hoodie. The primary warrant was dated June 2, 2014, and sworn by Detective Derek Wong of the Vancouver police based at 2120 Cambie Street. The time for the execution of the warrant is stated as being from 6AM to 9PM. The warrant is signed by EE Bowes. There is also a secondary warrant which is dated June 3, 2014, sworn by Ram Greoriou who is identified as a Vancouver police officer. This warrant has a time of 3-5PM listed and is also signed by EE Bowes. Considering the minor nature of the charges, the raid carried out by the Vancouver police is clearly part of a larger strategy of politically motivated repression against radicals and especially the growing resistance against oil and gas pipelines throughout the province. As a tactic, the raid enables police to seize items such as computers, extract information from them, disrupt communications, and very possibly emplace spyware prior to their return. The raid and its subsequent occupation of the space by the cops provides them with the opportunity to take a snapshot of their target’s lives, and to possibly put in place listening devices. As a part of a strategy of repression, the raid is an attempt to intimidate and silence those involved in resistance movements. http://warriorpublications.wordpress.com/2014/06/04/police-raid-house-in-east-vancouver-with-guns-drawn-on-pretext-of-anti-pipeline-graffiti/

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RCMP Officer Forced Me To Perform Oral Sex, Woman Alleges


CALGARY – A southern Alberta woman has filed a lawsuit against the RCMP that alleges she was forced to perform a sex act while an officer drove her home.

The statement of claim names among the defendants the force and the officer who is based in the Strathmore, Alta., detachment east of Calgary.

It says the woman was brought into the detachment in December 2012 to provide a statement regarding an incident at her home.

She was being taken home from the detachment in the early morning when its alleged the officer driving pulled off the main road. The woman alleges she was ordered to strip and perform oral sex on the officer. Continue reading

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A Case By Case Documentary of Police Brutality As Gang Violence

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A thought on transit police from The Bus Riders Union

Are the transit police making the transit system safer? Let’s look at the facts:Transit-Police-900x600
  • Transit police have assaulted transit riders, and they admit to tasering people for not paying their fares.
  • Transit police harass First Nations people and people of colour.
  • Transit police target fare checks against people who look poor.
  • Transit police have called Immigration on people they think are undocumented migrants. Because of this, many undocumented people will not ride transit because they are afraid of being deported.
  • Transit police admit that fare enforcement is their first priority, before the safety and well-being of transit riders.
  • Transit police issue $173 fines to people who can’t afford the transit fare.
  • Undercover transit police fine people who give their used tickets away to people who can’t afford the fare
The transit system belongs to all of us!

In 2006, TransLink spent $16.6 million to hire 84 transit police with full powers to arrest, detain and issue fines in and around Skytrain stations. Now there are 156 transit police, and TransLink plans to hire even more. Transit police have guns – which makes Metro Vancouver the first place in Canada with an armed police force.

The transit police say their job is to enforce fares, not protect our safety.

Women have been kicked off the bus and SkyTrain late at night because they don’t have enough money to pay the fare. This puts them at increased risk of assault.

TransLink likes to blame their budget shortage on ‘fare evaders’. This is poor-bashing. In 2007 TransLink lost $6.4 million dollars to fare evasion – less than half of what they spent on transit police. And ninety-seven percent of all rides are paid for! This shows that fare evasion is not a big problem.

Not paying your bus fare is the same as not paying the meter when you park your car. But car drivers with parking tickets are not called criminals. And parking tickets are only $46, which is a lot less than the $173 fine facing bus riders without a valid fare. Bus riders without a valid fare also face the threat of police violence.

People who can’t afford bus fare are treated like criminals. But our transit system belongs to everyone. We paid for it, and the government runs it.

The transit police admit that they have tasered people who did not have a valid fare. It’s no wonder that more and more people are afraid to ride the bus or skytrain because of the police. The fear is felt most intensely in communities of colour – where people also experience racial profiling from transit police.

Putting police on the bus is another step towards treating our transit system like a private business. It’s all part of privatization. Privatization means that private companies make money off of the transit system that we pay for.

Over the last five years fares have gone up forty percent! High fares are also caused by privatization. So are cuts to service. The money raised from service cuts and high fares is being used to build the Canada line. The Canada line is the largest privatization project in Canadian history, and it is going to cost over $2 billion dollars. That’s a lot more than ‘fare evasion’ ever cost the transit system.

What would a safe transit system be like?
  • Safety means being able to ride the bus with dignity, and room to sit down.
  • Safety means the bus is there for you when you need it – at all times of the day or night.
  • Safety means being able to afford to get on the bus.
  • Safety means being treated with respect, regardless of race, gender or income.


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Vancouver Police go “Beyond the Call”, Gang arrest a 100 pound woman…….

1238992_649837271696051_1460301578_nI took this photograph of a woman being arrested and taken away yesterday in front of the Sunrise Hotel on Hastings Street. She weighed probably well under 100 lbs and presumably was behaving erratically on the street. There are in fact two more officers in behind the scene who are not visible. She was terrified. At one point the officer in front pushed her head down and she screamed while the other officer in the back put cuffs on her. Is there any other way to help people with mental illnesses? Photo copyright Gabor Gasztonyi.

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Judge calls Abbotsford police ‘a place that time forgot’

By Jason Proctor, CBC News Posted: Dec 05, 2013

Paraplegic man suing City of Abbotsford after being subjected to degrading treatment by police..

The Abbotsford Police Department is reviewing its policies for interactions with disabled prisoners after a blistering B.C. Supreme Court judgment said that officers who arrested a paraplegic man subjected him to “inhumane,” “degrading” and “outrageous” treatment.

Ryan Austin Moonie launched a civil claim against the department this week for breaching his right to life, liberty and security under Section 7 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

In his notice of claim, Moonie cites a previously unpublished decision by B.C. Supreme Court Justice Kathleen Ker, who stayed 10 firearm and drug-related charges against him in April because of the force’s “blatant disregard” for his human dignity. Continue reading

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Vancouver homeless man alleges police brutality

CBC Oct 22, 2013hi-bc-131022-travis-dunford-1-week-after

A Downtown Eastside homeless man says Vancouver police threw him to the ground, punching and kicking his face, while arresting him for allegedly stealing a bicycle tire in Olympic Village in September.

Travis Dunford, 36, says he was arrested on Sept. 24, suspected of stealing a bicycle tire near the Tap & Barrel Pub.

Dunford, who admits committing petty theft to feed a heroin habit, alleges that, even after he was in handcuffs, with his face pushed to the ground, officers continued to kick him.

“I dropped the tire on the officer’s foot. Next thing I know, my face is on the ground like a cheese grater. They’re kicking me,” said Dunford.

The Pivot Legal Society has taken over the case, and is asking witnesses to come forward. Lawyer Douglas King said Dunford suffered more than just cuts and bruises.

“The most serious of his injuries is to the left eye, which was almost completely swollen shut, the day after this occurred,” said King.

“All of this suggest that a moderate degree of force was used against him.”

Vancouver Police Sgt. Randy Fincham said the incident occurred around 11:00 p.m. PT, when police confronted and attempted to take into custody a man suspected of stealing a bait bicycle they had set out.

“During that incident the person that was riding the bicycle, after refusing to follow police commands, fell … or was taken to the ground by police, where that person did sustain an injury,” said Fincham.

According to Fincham, paramedics attended the scene, and that person was taken to the hospital as a precaution.

Fincham also stated the injury was reported to the VPD Professional Standards Section, and the following day it was also reported to the Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner.

King said incidents like Dunfords don’t move forward because these complaints are investigated by police, instead of the independent office.

“Police have their own version of events. Without an independent system of investigation.. the only people who are successful are the ones with video footage or someone who can back up what they say.”

King estimates for every one caught on video, a dozen aren’t, which he said can lead to police brutality going unreported.

The Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner provides independent civilian oversight of complaints involving municipal police in B.C.

Without a witness, the case doesn’t qualify to be investigated by the independent investigation organization.

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