Posts Tagged ‘First Fridays’

Join Southern Barton Heights Copwatch on Friday July 6th at 8pm to participate in a Copwatch Patrol of the First Fridays Artwalk on Broad Street.

Meet at 422 West Broad, in front of the Made RVA General Store.

Bring cameras- video or still, cell phones, flashlights or headlamps, water and snacks if you have them. Please dress for the weather and with shoes you are comfortable walking around in for a couple of hours.

If you are able to, we recommend that you get in touch with Copwatch ahead of time for a Know Your Rights training and a brief How to Copwatch training. We will coordinate groups for that evening, and also arrange for a group debriefing at the end of the night.

August of 2011 was the first month we did an official patrol of the First Fridays event (after over a year of doing Copwatch in Richmond), and one Copwatcher had a tazer put in their face by a Richmond Cop. In September, a smaller patrol went out and was assaulted and harassed by the Richmond police, culminating in one member of Copwatch being arrested at the end of the night on bogus charges. We refuse to be intimidated by the illegal actions of the Richmond Police Department. The aggressive, illegal, and unprofessional behavior of the Richmond Police Department as a whole, simply goes to show the necessity of Copwatch, and the regular observing and recording of a police force as long as one exists. Beyond that the continued violent and oppressive behavior of many members of the Richmond Police Department goes to show the systemic nature of problems with police- problems that will be solved not through reform, but through abolition. As long as the police congregate on Broad Street to oppress and antagonize largely youth of color in order to maintain the gentrifying aspects of the First Fridays Artwalk, Copwatch will be there.

In July we will be doing patrols of this event, cameras in hand. If you are interested in joining us for the patrol, please get in touch, so we know how many cameras and other equipment to bring out with us. We will start patrols around 8:30pm, and keep going until everyone is tired. We will try to make ourselves visible for folks who might just want to have conversations through out the night.

This will be a chance for folks who have never experienced Copwatch to talk with experienced copwatchers and get some training as to how to safely observe and record the police.

You can get in touch at sbhcopwatch@gmail.com or 804 303 5449 or come to the Copwatch meeting on the 4th Tuesday of each month  at 7pm at 2005 Barton Avenue

Reposting for friends at VACLAA. Immigration and May Day are incredibly intertwined, and the connections between labor struggles and immigration struggles really can’t be emphasized enough. Come out on First Fridays (May 4th) to meet with folks from VACLAA and tie these struggles together and make some art! This is going to be awesome.
Our Copwatch First Fridays Patrol will be meeting basically across the street from this event at 7pm.

From the Virginia Center for Latin American Art:

VACLAA’s back at First Friday’s Artwalk on May 4th with a new live mural project about words and power and we need your input!

Messages about Text

Some of the most amazing writing on the topic of work, struggle and human dignity was created in Latin America. From the political discourse of Che Guevara to the poetic innovations of Cesar Vallejo, the word has always been a respected tool in Latin America for attaining a more just society and ennobling the efforts of women and men as they seek a sense of personal dignity. In honor of these efforts, VACLAA is producing a mural with components of relief and collage that challenges Richmonders to seek a deeper vein of discourse in a world in which words carry such little weight they drift away in text bubbles.

We invite members of the Richmond community to bring their own favorite quotes from artists, poets, political activists, grandmothers, or their own dog-eared journals on the subject of the power of men and women through work to attain a sense of self worth.

In addition to the live art event, our site at 401 W. Broad St. will be alive with readings from Latin Youth Poets from Huguenot High School, music from Underwater Seacreatures, handmade crafts from a group of Mexican artisans, savory food from Ken Ticos Cuban Restaurant and VACLAA coffee tastings.

Location: 401 West Broad Street – Moore’s Auto body parking lot

VACLAA regresa al First Fridays Artwalk el 4 de Mayo con un proyecto nuevo. Es un mural hecho en vivo acerca de las palabras y el poder. ¡Para completarlo necesitamos su participación!

Mensajes sobre Texto

Algunos de los escritos más increíble sobre el tema del trabajo, la lucha y la dignidad humana, fue creada en América Latina. Desde el discurso político de Che Guevara a las innovaciones poéticas de César Vallejo, la palabra ha sido siempre una instrumento respetada en América Latina para alcanzar una sociedad más justa y elevar los esfuerzos de mujeres y hombres que buscan un sentido de dignidad personal. En honor a estos esfuerzos, VACLAA está produciendo un mural con estos elementos. Esperamos que el collage desafía la gente de Richmond a buscar una vena profunda del discurso en un mundo en el que las palabras tienen pesan tan poco que se alejan en las burbujas de texto.

Invitamos a los miembros de la comunidad de Richmond a traer a sus citas favoritas de escritores, poetas, activistas políticos, sus abuelas o sus propias revistas de sus diarios personales sobre el tema del poder de los hombres y mujeres a través del trabajo para lograr un sentido de autoestima.

Además del evento de arte hecho en vivo, nuestro sitio en el 401 W. Broad St. también tendrá las recitaciones de poetas jóvenes de América de la escuela secundaria Huguenot, música de Seacreatures Submarinas, artesanías hechas a mano de un grupo de artesanos mexicanos, la comida sabrosa de Ken Ticos Restaurante Cubano y pruebas de café hecho para VACLAA.

Localizado en el 401 West Broad St.- En el aparcamiento de Moore’s Auto Body

Join Southern Barton Heights Copwatch on Friday May 4th at 7pm to participate in a Copwatch Patrol of the First Fridays Artwalk on Broad Street.

Meet at 422 West Broad, in front of the Made RVA General Store.

Bring cameras- video or still, cell phones, flashlights or headlamps, water and snacks if you have them. Please dress for the weather and with shoes you are comfortable walking around in for a couple of hours.

If you are able to, we recommend that you get in touch with Copwatch ahead of time for a Know Your Rights training and a brief How to Copwatch training. We will coordinate groups for that evening, and also arrange for a group debriefing at the end of the night.

August of 2011 was the first month we did an official patrol of the First Fridays event (after over a year of doing Copwatch in Richmond), and one Copwatcher had a tazer put in their face by a Richmond Cop. In September, a smaller patrol went out and was assaulted and harassed by the Richmond police, culminating in one member of Copwatch being arrested at the end of the night on bogus charges. We refuse to be intimidated by the illegal actions of the Richmond Police Department. The aggressive, illegal, and unprofessional behavior of the Richmond Police Department as a whole, simply goes to show the necessity of Copwatch, and the regular observing and recording of a police force as long as one exists. Beyond that the continued violent and oppressive behavior of many members of the Richmond Police Department goes to show the systemic nature of problems with police- problems that will be solved not through reform, but through abolition. As long as the police congregate on Broad Street to oppress and antagonize largely youth of color in order to maintain the gentrifying aspects of the First Fridays Artwalk, Copwatch will be there.

In May we will be doing patrols of this event, cameras in hand. If you are interested in joining us for the patrol, please get in touch, so we know how many cameras and other equipment to bring out with us. We will start patrols around 7:30pm, and keep going until everyone is tired. We will try to make ourselves visible for folks who might just want to have conversations through out the night.

This will be a chance for folks who have never experienced Copwatch to talk with experienced copwatchers and get some training as to how to safely observe and record the police.

You can get in touch at sbhcopwatch@gmail.com or 804 303 5449 or come to the Copwatch meeting on the 4th Tuesday of each month  at 7pm at 2005 Barton Avenue

The February Copwatch meeting will be held on Tuesday the 28th at 7pm at the Wingnut, 2005 Barton Avenue.

We will be discussing goals, strategy, copwatch protocol, and organizational structure for a city-wide Copwatch network.

Other agenda items may include:

fundraising, First Friday Patrols, Shockoe Bottom Patrols, How to Copwatch a Protest trainings, How to Copwatch trainings, Know Your Rights trainings, etc.

Come find out how you can start a branch of copwatch in your own neighborhood!

…Anyone with an interest in monitoring the police and holding them accountable for their actions is welcome to come. Bring yourself, your friends, and lots of ideas!

Have you ever felt like your rights were violated by the police? Have you ever seen bad behavior from the police? Want to find ways to build stronger communities that are protected from the police? Check out Richmond Copwatch!

Richmond Copwatch is a non-hierarchical organization dedicated to ending police abuse. We believe that monitoring and recording police interactions with community members is a vital first step towards ensuring accountability and protecting ourselves and our communities. We are committed to anti-authoritarian principles and seek to transform the nature of the police and explore alternative methods of community conflict resolution.

Come out to a Richmond Copwatch Meeting, on the 4th Tuesday of every month at 7pm at the Wingnut Anarchist Collective, 2005 Barton Avenue.
Email sbhcopwatch@gmail.com or call 804 303 5449 for more info. Details about our workshops, patrols, and special events can be found online at www.wingnutrva.org

You can email the Southern Barton Heights branch of Richmond Copwatch at sbhcopwatch@gmail.com

Richmond Copwatch will be out on December 2nd to observe and record the police during December’s First Friday. We will be meeting at 6:00pm at the statue in in Festival Park. All are welcome to come out, regardless of experience!

Festival Park is located between Fifth and Seventh Streets, adjacent to the Richmond Coliseum (which is at 601 East Leigh Street, downtown).
The park between the former 6th Street Marketplace and the Richmond Coliseum is called Nina F. Abady Festival Park.

Festival Park is open until 3am so this will be a safe, public place to meet even after dark.

We will present a How to Copwatch training, in order to try to get everyone the information they need to be safe and effective.

Some things to bring include:

  • Video cameras
  • Still cameras
  • Cell phones
  • Flashlights
  • Water
  • Some snacks
  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Weather appropriate clothing
  • Pens/Pencils
  • Notebook/paper for taking notes and recording information

We will be doing patrols of the First Friday Art Walk with a focus on recording police interactions with people. This is meant to curb the level of violence in the RPD’s crowd control tactics during this event, and to ensure there is a record of evidence when police brutality and violence occurs.

Depending on the number of Copwatchers who show up, we will likely split into two or more working groups and begin patrols shortly after 7:00pm. If there is not much of a police presence, we might keep patrols short and encourage folks to attend the Shockoe Bottom Copwatch Patrol the following day (Saturday Dec. 3rd meet at 10pm in front of Main Street Station).

Come out for as much or as little of First Friday as you are able. If you cannot find us, the point of contact for December’s First Friday Copwatch patrol will be (804) 300-0023.

Fair warning: Copwatchers expose themselves to a certain level of legal risk and police harrassment. If, like us, you refuse to be intimidated by these thuggish oppression tactics, come and join us!

You can get in touch with Richmond Copwatch at sbhcopwatch@gmail.com or (804) 303-5449, or come to the Copwatch meeting on December 27th at 7:00pm, at 2005 Barton Avenue.

 

Richmond Copwatch will be out tomorrow night (Friday 11/4) to observe and record the police during November’s First Friday. We will be meeting at 6:00pm at the fountain in Monroe Park. All are welcome to come out, regardless of experience!

Some things to bring include:

  • Video cameras (We have some extra video cameras)
  • Still cameras
  • Cell phones
  • Flashlights
  • Water
  • Some snacks
  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Weather appropriate clothing (There is a 37 degree low tomorrow night!)

We will be doing patrols of the First Friday Art Walk with a focus on recording police interactions with people. This is meant to curb the level of violence in the RPD’s crowd control tactics during this event, and to ensure there is a record of evidence when police brutality and violence occurs.

Depending on the number of Copwatchers who show up, we will likely split into two or more working groups and begin patrols shortly after 6:00pm. For those who are new to Copwatch, we will briefly go over the basics of Knowing Your Rights and how to safely observe and record the police.

Come out for as much or as little of First Friday as you are able. If you cannot find us, the point of contact for November’s First Friday Copwatch patrol will be (540) 850-3848.

Fair warning: Copwatchers expose themselves to a certain level of legal risk and police harrassment. If, like us, you refuse to be intimidated by these thuggish oppression tactics, come and join us!

You can get in touch with Richmond Copwatch at sbhcopwatch@gmail.com or (804) 303-5449, or come to the Copwatch meeting on November 22nd at 7:00pm, at 2005 Barton Avenue.

Recently there has been renewed hubbub around CAPS in Richmond again. CAPS, for those (lucky enough to be unfamiliar with it), stands for Community Assisted Public Safety. It is a joining of efforts of Police, Code Enforcement, and citizens. Lately they have been keeping residents of Richmond  safe by hunting down house shows and punk venues and shutting them down, charging the owners/leasees/proprietors with a variety of misdemeanors and other charges according to news reports.

CAPS, just like Cops, serve a very specific function in our city and society. We can not reform CAPS just as we can not reform Cops.  We might be able to push back in terms of unconstitutional aspects of the overall CAPS program, including dipshit City Councilman Charles Samuels’ noise ordinances, but CAPS is not an abnormality or mistake.

A well written article by Carl Athey in RVA magazine (http://rvamag.com/articles/full/12329/who-invited-these-guys) called out the apparent hypocrisy in the City of Richmond proudly lauding its arts and music scenes, with the new Arts District and the simultaneous increased policing and harassment of the arts and music scenes, everything from a high admissions tax to police oppression of First Fridays. What I think is important is to realize that the city and powers that be are in fact NOT being hypocritical.

They want arts and music scenes, just not ones that are oppositional to the status quo. In fact, it might be a bad assumption on the part of Athey and others (or maybe they’ve been intentionally tricked) to believe that they are included in the art and music culture that the City wants to build here. 

So to answer Carl’s query to see if  the city will back up their rebranding image by backing down on CAPS- we think not. CAPS and the City are rebranding themselves as Carl mentions- it is highly unlikely that they will want to include broke, dirty, drunk punk kids in that image.

CAPS functions very deliberately.

CAPS uses existing regulations, from building codes to business laws, in order to shut down cultural events that either are not to the taste of the rich people and politicians, or which they are not able to properly profit off of. (more…)

Richmond Copwatch is planning to continue its patrols of First Fridays in downtown Richmond in the month of October. Join us, meeting at the fountain in Monroe Park at 6pm on Friday October 7th. Bring cameras- video or still, cell phones, flashlights or headlamps, water and snacks if you have them. Please dress for the weather and with shoes you are comfortable walking around in for a couple of hours.

If you are able to, we recommend that you get in touch with Copwatch ahead of time for a Know Your Rights training and a brief How to Copwatch training. We will coordinate groups for that evening in the park, and also arrange for a group debriefing at the end of the night.

August was the first month we did an official patrol of the First Fridays event (after over a year of doing Copwatch in Richmond), and one Copwatcher had a tazer put in their face by a Richmond Cop. In September, a smaller patrol went out and was assaulted and harassed by the Richmond police, culminating in one member of Copwatch being arrested at the end of the night on bogus charges. We refuse to be intimidated by the illegal actions of the Richmond Police Department. The aggressive, illegal, and unprofessional behavior of the Richmond Police Department as a whole, simply goes to show the necessity of Copwatch, and the regular observing and recording of a police force as long as one exists. Beyond that the continued violent and oppressive behavior of many members of the Richmond Police Department goes to show the systemic nature of problems with police- problems that will be solved not through reform, but through abolition. As long as the police congregate on Broad Street to oppress and antagonize largely youth of color in order to maintain the gentrifying aspects of the First Fridays Artwalk, Copwatch will be there.

In October we will be doing patrols of this event, cameras in hand. If you are interested in joining us for the patrol, please get in touch, (more…)

I was at home on Friday night, not participating in Copwatch due to other conflicting activities. The phone rang, and on the other end was Copwatch Member D, who quickly related that another member of Copwatch, M, was being detained by the police. D said that the police were not allowing them to get anywhere near M, and that because all of the Copwatch cameras had been placed in M’s bag, the police had them all. I got the location, called to Copwatcher X, and jumped in the car to get to the scene as quickly as possible.

Upon arrival we met up with D, and walked to the street where M was being detained. I walked down the sidewalk on Monroe Street, off of Broad (headed South). Quickly, 2 members of Richmond Police Department informed me that if I was going to walk down the sidewalk I would be arrested. I asked what for, and they said Obstruction of Justice.

I got into an argument with them, explaining to them the definition of Obstruction of Justice in Virginia, and how my walking down a sidewalk to observe and record the police did not count. Then the cop informed me that he had specific orders not to let the three of us down that street. This whole time other people were walking down the street. I informed the cop that what he was engaging in was illegal, selective enforcement, and a violation of our right to observe and record as well as move freely. He kept repeating that he would arrest me if Iwalked down the public sidewalk. (more…)

Richmond Police try to force members of Richmond Copwatch down the sidewalk on Broad Street during a cancelled First Fridays on September 2nd.

Officer Gilbert and one other intentionally try to prevent Copwatch members from observing and recording the police, as we are legally allowed to do. They also insisted that Copwatch members would be written a summons if they did not keep walking. They denied the right of Copwatchers to stand on the city sidewalk. Officer Gilbert repeatedly assaults one Copwatcher by kicking and shoving him in an obvious attempt at harassment and intimidation. The Richmond Police shown in this video are clearly violating the rights of members of Richmond Copwatch.