Chicanos confront an LA Sheriff Department community meeting
East LA, CA — A small tortilla-making store, La Imperial Tortillería, hosted a public event inside of their shop titled “Coffee with a Deputy,” February 23. Inside of the shop were less than a dozen people surrounded by East LA sheriffs who were having coffee. This sad event was a public relations stunt by the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department to counter the ever-growing sentiment against deputy gangs and the LASD.
Outside of the shop, two dozen people showed up to protest the event. Some of those in attendance were members of Centro CSO, Say Their Names LA, and the family of David Ordaz Jr., who was killed March 2021 by East LA sheriffs a block away from the event’s location.
Carlos Montes and Luis Sifuentes, both members of Centro CSO, led the protesters in chants like, “Who killed David? LASD!” and “Adios Villanueva!” Villanueva is Alex Villanueva, the sheriff of Los Angeles County. The angry protesters then took it inside and confronted the public meeting full of LA sheriffs. The owners of the shop and its employees became upset and yelled, “This is a private meeting, get out!” at the protesters, some of whom were carrying children in their arms. The owner approached one CSO member and said, “I am the owner and I am asking you to leave and take your protest outside.” The sheriffs attempted to move the protesters out but they stood firm chanting and disrupting the meeting.
The deputies who had been sharing a cup of coffee with the small group were forced to walk out of the shop. The protesters continued their chants and demanded answers from the deputies. At one point the captain of the East LA Sheriff’s Station, Richard Mejia, approached the family of David Ordaz Jr. and talked for a few minutes.
David’s daughter Emily Ordaz said to Mejia, “You never made the effort to talk to me or my family after your deputies killed my dad.” To which Mejia responded with, “We did but you guys hired a lawyer!”
A shouting match ensued and ended with LASD Sergeant Hoffman asking to speak with only the family of David Ordaz Jr. Hoffman was wearing the racist “a kick in the pants” pin, a logo that originated out of the East LA Sheriff’s Station.
The family of David Ordaz Jr. and Centro CSO are fighting to win justice for Ordaz, the jailing of the killer deputies, and the ouster of Sheriff Villanueva. This led them to unite with others like the Check the Sheriff Coalition. There are efforts to get a charter amendment on this year’s California ballot to gain more community control over LASD. To join their efforts contact CSO at 323-943-2030 Centro CSO @ Gmail, TikTok, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.