• Only Andy’s friends and community can win justice—Keep the struggle alive!
• No confidence in police or politicians or FBI—Stop the cover-up!
• Release the names of the killer cops and all videos of the murder now.
• Independent, community-led investigation of Andy Lopez’s killing.
• End racist police and ICE harassment of Latina/o and black youth! Stop the deportations. Full citizenship rights for all immigrants with and without papers!
Andy Lopez was a son, brother, cousin, friend, and classmate. Only 13 years old, he was a musician who played the trumpet and the saxophone. He was a gifted and skilled athlete in the running to receive scholarships in jujitsu and boxing. He dreamed of going to college and maybe even joining the Marines. He could have been any one of us. In Roseland, as across the nation, racist police and ICE agents harass and terrorize young Latina/o people on a daily basis, and threaten to separate Latino and immigrant families with arrest and deportation. We and our communities deserve to live and to be treated with respect and dignity–with full citizenship rights.
On Friday, students walked out of school and hundreds marched for justice for Andy Lopez demanding Jail the Killer Cops! The march was militant, determined, and angry—even as adults, afraid of our power, tried to hold back and contain our rage. Youth had the power that day. No police officers dared to show their face, and we shut down the Sheriff’s Department. Latina/o youth of Roseland & Santa Rosa inspired students of all races and the nation.
Over the coming days and weeks, older people who claim to be “on our side” will urge young people to be “reasonable,” stop fighting, go back to school, or work on a “process” like establishing a worthless civilian police review board or new “training” for the police, or support someone’s election campaign. All these will be useless and will only guarantee that no justice is won for Andy, and that the police who murdered him are never held accountable and are back out in the streets to do this to someone else. Andy’s friends and the youth of Roseland must lead, keep the struggle alive, and keep fighting by any means necessary to win justice for Andy. No business as usual until the killer cops are jailed!
Only Andy’s Friends and Community Can Win Justice!
No Confidence in the Police and Politicians—Stop the Cover-up!
On Tuesday, Oct. 22, Andy was shot down in cold blood by two Sonoma County sheriffs while walking in his neighborhood in Roseland, carrying a toy pellet gun. Multiple witnesses report: he had no time to follow the sheriff’s orders, never pointed anything at the sheriffs, and the sheriffs immediately fired. He was shot seven times, even after he was lying on the ground. Autopsy reports show he was gunned down from behind, with bullet wounds in his back.
Police began the cover-up immediately, handcuffing Andy before providing any medical assistance. They confiscated one witness’s cell phone who recorded what happened. They have been on a rampage of intimidation against other witnesses, arresting one and searching his house after he spoke to the news about how he saw the police shoot Andy even after he was on the ground.
According to news reports, the police murdered Andy within 10 seconds of calling dispatch that they saw him walking in the field with the toy gun. But only two weeks before, James Provost, a white man living in the wealthy community of Fountain Grove, fired a real gun with real bullets at his wife and a locksmith at his home. The police talked to him for 11 hours before arresting him, and they never fired a shot at him. James Provost got 11 hours, but Andy Lopez got 10 seconds. We need to an independent community investigation to publicize these and more facts of what really happened to stop the police’s and politician’s cover-up of Andy’s murder.
Local politicians have allowed the Sheriff’s Department to hide the names of the police officers who murdered Andy to protect their right to do so again. Even the ones who pretend to be sympathetic are planning how to shut down our struggle out of their fear of the power and anger of Latina/o youth and the community.
BAMN knows from the struggle for justice for Oscar Grant—where the movement won the first-ever conviction of a California police officer for killing someone while on-duty—every step toward an actual investigation and actual justice, including getting charges filed against the killer cop, was only in response to continued mass, militant, direct action led by young people in their own defense. Andy’s friends and Santa Rosa’s youth must lead and keep fighting: walking out, marching, exposing the truth, and fighting to keep the struggle alive — to win justice for Andy and to defend every young person, especially Latina/o, black, and immigrant youth so we stop this from happening again.