Boyle Heights holds rally for national protest day against police crimes
Los Angeles, CA – Answering the National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression’s call for a national protest against police crimes, Centro CSO held a rally at Los Cinco Puntos in Boyle Heights, July 18. At the action, Centro CSO pushed for Black and brown unity and demanded the end to the killings of Blacks, Chicanos and Latinos by the Los Angeles Police and LA Sheriff’s Departments.
The location of Los Cinco Puntos – the site where five important streets meet and a memorial for Chicano veterans who fought in World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War – was significant for many reasons. Along with victims of police brutality, the rally honored Vanessa Guillén, the 20-year-old Chicana U.S. army soldier who was murdered in April after being sexually harassed by a superior at Food Hood in Texas. Los Cincos Puntos served as the starting point for the first huge march against the racist anti-immigrant California Proposition 187 in 1994, when over 100,000 marched from Cinco Puntos to LA City Hall.
Centro CSO’s Alex Orellana, a former member of the military, gave a speech about sexual harassment and other forms of sexual misconduct toward servicewomen that he witnessed while in the armed forces. He mentioned that the military’s treatment of women, along with Trump’s election, influenced his decision to become a “defector.”
Los Cinco Puntos is also right where Boyle Heights and East Los Angeles, the two communities where Centro CSO primarily organizes, meet. The Los Angeles Police Department, specifically its Hollenbeck Division, patrols Boyle Heights while the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department covers East Los Angeles. Both departments have continuously killed Chicano young men over the last few years. Throughout the protest, cars from both LAPD and LASD circled the area.
Protesters held up a banner reading, “LAPD stop killing Black and brown people,'' and “Jail killer cops!” Chants included “How do you spell murderer? LAPD'' and “El pueblo unido jamás, será vencido.” Protesters also chanted the names of the many victims of police brutality throughout the country – George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tamir Rice and Sean Monterrosa – as well as those killed specifically in the area like Jesse Romero, Edwin Rodriguez, Paul Rea and Anthony Vargas. Centro CSO will continue to fight against police killings and build the fight to win community control over the police. Join us for future events.
Visit and contact CSO at the following 323-943-2030, [email protected], or @CentroCSO on social media.
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