|03-11-2006, 12:05 PM||#1|
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 353Rep Power: 0
Trial set for two of Somerville 5
Trial set for two of Somerville 5: ‘Drop racist frame-up charges’
The five were beaten, Maced, arrested and psychologically traumatized by ten white Medford police, then charged with numerous crimes. According to the committee, what was an unprovoked police attack by racist cops was quickly covered up, and the police, courts, D.A., local media and press and education officials have all worked together to frame these young men. The five have no prior police records. Boston City Councilor Chuck Turner described them as “well respected, serious students and promising athletes.”
Trial set for two of Somerville 5
‘Drop racist frame-up charges’
By WW Boston bureau
Published Mar 9, 2006 8:48 PM
The Committee to Defend the Somerville 5 is calling on supporters to put pressure on Middlesex County District Attorney Martha Coakley to immediately drop the racist frame-up charges against the five defendants—Calvin Belfon Jr., Cassius Belfon, Earl Guerra, Isaiah Anderson and Marquis Anderson.
The five are young Black men ranging from 15 to 18 years old and former students at Somerville High School. They had gone out the night of April 20, 2005, to enjoy a carnival in Medford, Mass. But the night turned into one of horror that changed their lives forever.
The five were beaten, Maced, arrested and psychologically traumatized by ten white Medford police([search]), then charged with numerous crimes. According to the committee, what was an unprovoked police attack by racist cops was quickly covered up, and the police, courts, D.A., local media and press and education officials have all worked together to frame these young men. The five have no prior police records. Boston City Councilor Chuck Turner described them as “well respected, serious students and promising athletes.”
The committee says a massive police cover-up ensued, with the police spread ing outrageous lies about what happened that night. Police charged the five with assault with a deadly weapon, assault and battery, and disorderly conduct.
“Police attacks and police terror against youth of color are an everyday occurrence. While the U.S. enters its third year of war against the people of Iraq([search]), they are at the same time waging war against poor people and people of color here at home,” said Gerry Scop pettuolo of the Somerville 5 Committee.
The police, with the backing of Coakley, have now forced the cases of Calvin Belfon and Isaiah Anderson to Superior Court. Belfon and Anderson are being tried as adults. They face the most severe charges of the five youths. If convicted they could spend at least two years and possibly more in prison. Their trial starts March 13.
“We need the largest presence possible on this date to express our outrage at the railroading of these five young Black men,” said Robert Trayhnam, also of the Somerville 5 Committee.
The committee urges supporters to picket and pack the court as well as to contact Middlesex County District Attorney Martha Coakley, 40 Thorn dike St., Cambridge, MA 02141; phone: 617-494-4300, 617-679-6500 or 617-679-6522; fax: 617-225-0871, and to make the following demands: drop all the racist-frame-up charges immediately; demand an independent community investigation into Medford police; stop racial profiling and police brutality.
Also, “The fight for Justice: A benefit concert for the Somerville 5,” is scheduled for Saturday March 25 at the Hibernian Hall, 184 Dudley St., Rox bury, Mass. The evening will include cultural events, a fashion show and a speak-out. The cost is $3 for youth, $20 for adults, no one turned away for lack of funds. For tickets and more information: 617-522-6626.
This article is copyright under a Creative Commons License.
Workers World, 55 W. 17 St., NY, NY 10011
Email: ww (at) workers.org
Subscribe wwnews-subscribe (at) workersworld.net
Support independent news http://www.workers.org/orders/donate.php