Friday, December 18, 2009
Local civil rights groups announced today a press conference (on the day after Christmas) to discuss the filing of a complaint with the Department of Justice concerning "alleged abuses" by the Monterey County Sheriff's Office.
Led by Diana Jimenez, president of the North Monterey County chapter of the League of United Latin American Citizens, LULAC recently filed three complaints alleging excessive force during "Operation Disrupt," a controversial series of Castroville sweeps and arrests in June.
LULAC Vice President Martha Chavarria says the complaints and previous grievances have been sent to the Department of Justice, calling for a federal investigation. "We want an outside investigation," Chavarria says. "This has been going on for so many years, so we need to see if we can eliminate these violations."
The organization has long complained of racial profiling by Sheriff deputies, but this time they are not alone. NAACP President Ben Jealous, Civil Rights Coalition Chairman Mel Mason, and ACLU Monterey County chapter President Elliot Roberts are expected to attend the Dec. 26 press conference.