ACLU–Santa Cruz Chapter writes,
"Eleven local activists have been charged with a variety of offenses arising from the occupation of a vacant bank building last fall. We have two primary concerns regarding this prosecution. First, at least some of the defendants are journalists who were present to report on the protest. We condemn any attempt to criminalize their exercise of the crucial First Amendment right to gather and disseminate information about this newsworthy event. All charges based on this constitutionally protected activity should be dropped immediately. Second, it appears that some of the defendants may have been charged due to their past adversarial relationship with law enforcement officials."
The Long Haul and East Bay Prisoner Support have settled their lawsuits over an armed, over-broad police raid after the law enforcement agencies agreed to delete improperly seized computer data and pay $100,000 in damages and attorney's fees. Moreover, the University of California-Berkeley Police Department (UCBPD) acknowledged that at the time of the raid one of the groups qualified for federal protections designed to protect journalists, publishers, and other distributors of information from police searches, despite the police's persistent denial of that status throughout the lawsuit.
On April 2nd, law enforcement agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Internal Revenue Service, and the U.S. Marshals Service raided the businesses and home of licensed medical cannabis provider and activist Richard Lee in Oakland. Americans for Safe Access (ASA) put out a call for patients and advocates to go to Oaksterdam University in downtown Oakland to protest the raids and support the victims. At least two people were arrested in the street while the raid continued. Richard Lee called the raid a "senseless act of intimidation."
Students, educators, workers, and supporters of the Occupy movement, converged in the thousands on the State Capitol in Sacramento on March 5th. They were there to demand that the government fund education and social services. In the morning, a march left Sacramento's Southside Park headed for the Capitol. There they were joined by thousands of other protesters.
They came from across the state.
California's Proposition 8 ban on same sex marriage was ruled unconstitutional by a three member panel of judges from the US Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit. Judge Smith dissented. The panel majority stated that California voters violated the 14th Amendment of the Federal Constitution when voting for Prop 8. San Francisco's City Attorney stated that officials are getting ready and changing marriage forms, but that until the stay is lifted same sex couples in California still cannot marry.
Santa Cruz, Calif. — Just as PG&E enters the final phase of its deployment of wireless “smart” meters in California, the largest of the state’s Investor Owned Utilities (IOU’s) has reversed course, quietly beginning to replace the ‘smart’ meters of those reporting health impacts with the old analog version. Consumer rights and health groups immediately seized on the news, demanding that millions of Californians unhappy with their new wireless meters get their analogs returned immediately at no cost.
UPDATE 7/12: Hunger Striker’s Health Rapidly Deteriorates | 7/14: Vigil to support the Prisoner Hunger Strikers
Thousands of California prisoners have come together in solidarity with the prisoners at Pelican Bay SHU. The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation’s own figures acknowledge 6,600 prisoners participated in the hunger strike across 13 prisons in California this past weekend. The first solidarity actions were held on July 1st on both sides of the SF Bay. Further solidarity actions were held in Oakland on July 8th and San Francisco on July 9th.