Cops Don’t Need Tanks

Militarizing Local Police Departments

Hector Villagra: We increasingly see its influence in our city streets because billions of dollars’ worth of military equipment has flowed from the federal government to state and local police departments. Departments now use these wartime weapons in everyday policing.

Can You Be Arrested in California for Refusing to Provide ID?

Refusing to Provide ID

Hector Villagra: We think it’s clear that because California has no stop identify and statute — and, therefore, in the words of the Supreme Court, has not created a legal obligation requiring a suspect to answer questions — you cannot be arrested for failing to provide identification when detained by a police officer.

Bye, Bye, Baca

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Baca Resigns — Baca’s failure to acknowledge the problem at its core had become the key impediment to its reform.

Veterans Deserve Better

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Hector Villagra: The VA’s failure to meet Valentini and other veterans’ most basic need for housing should cause us to question how much our government values the sacrifices they make.

Baca Held Liable for L.A. County Jail Violence

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Hector Villagra: A federal jury’s decision earlier this month to hold Sheriff Lee Baca personally liable for the savage beating of an inmate provides yet more proof of the deep-seated culture of violence in Los Angeles County’s jails.

Facing Reality: Race Matters

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Hector Villagra: We must confront race, admit racism still exists and discuss how it plays out in our society – without being accused of playing the race card or engaging in racial demagoguery.

SB 1070: California Is Not Arizona

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Hector Villagra: Monday’s decision shows that Arizona is a failed experiment. Most of this law – most of it has been struck down. And the piece that remains is obviously on life support. And it’s just a matter of time before that dies the death that it deserves.

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