Curfews, Undercovers, and Chest Cams, Oh my


On June 5, 2015, Mayor Libby Schaaf’s ” protest curfew” on night time demonstrations was tested again as 100 people marched through First Friday celebrations yelling “Fuck The Curfew”.

Oakland Police cut the march off on the north and south side of the First Friday corridor, but police remained fairly hands off. The general sentiment around town is that OPD took a hands off approach because the protesters and the First Friday revelers were indistinguishable from each other and any crackdown would have made for bad press and a possible backlash from Oakland’s new coveted affluent class: the gentry.

The treatment of “Say Her Name” protesters a couple weeks back was very different. Police responded to a predominately black, woman led march by blasting “LRAD” (Long Range Acoustic Device) and throwing flash bang grenades at marchers, eventually detaining and arresting many from the demonstration.

Video Produced by WeCopwatch

Both events had heavy police presence with a zero tolerance approach to people being in the streets, but there is no question that there was a discrepancy of treatment to the different groups– largely because of who they were comprised of, and who was there to witness.

Repeat Offenders

Screen Shot 2015-06-07 at 3.30.21 PM Overt plain clothes cops were also spotted Friday night. Oakland police officer Omega Crum along with at least one more undercover/plain clothed cop were spotted mingling amongst protestors and spectators and when approached by Bay Area Intifada, hurriedly made his way through an OPD riot line.

[For those who don’t know, Officer Crum was also documented by different Copwatchers on Mayday in 2013 where he was spotted following and photographing a Muslim contingent within the march. Video of this encounter can be seen here: Pigs Are Haram ]

Video Produced by WeCopwatch and Bay Area Intifada

Many officers from different ranks were spotted without their body cameras (PDRd’s)– which is against protocol.

One officer in particular, Officer Ocampo, was spotted for the second time without a PDRD within the last two months.

Ocampo can been seen in the video below assisting US Marshals in an arrest in West Oakland without his body camera.

Video Produced by WeCopwatch

At this stage in the battle to “Break the Curfew” it is unclear to say where things are headed, but without a doubt protests against police violence will continue and Copwatch will be out there documenting police actions. If you want to know more about you rights check in with us

WeCopwatch cuts ties with

For years we have tried to work with elements of Cop Block that have longed to be part of something bigger. Bigger then disgruntled white men, bigger than finger pointing, bigger than the ideals that Libertarianism has to offer.

While over time, we have been excited to see many people grow both individually and collectively, we have also watched years of good work undone in a matter of months by the recent return of informant, and founding member of Cop Block, Adam Mueller, aka Ademo Freeman.

We have no interest in making this a Copwatch vs Cop Block ordeal, however WeCopwatch is disconnecting from Cop Block pending an accountability process for Adam, and a stated commitment to fighting oppression internally.

We applaud those who have begun to wake up, but be humble, you’ve arrived late to the struggle. We need you to focus more on yourself, so that you can begin to work better with the larger movement.

We know that in order to make a movement that is powerful enough to take on state violence and oppression with any meaningful impact, we have no space in our personal lives, or in our own groups for racism, misogyny, anti gayness, transphobia, xenophobia, or any form of blind hatred.

While Cop Block has been claimed to be an idea, the idea that “Badges Don’t Grant Extra Rights”, this idea has been perverted by people who are unwilling to reflect on how their behavior perpetuates everything that is wrong with the state. From FB pages run by misguided individuals, to the recent actions of Cop Block’s founding member, Cop Block is destined to fail as a group, an idea, or a movement if it is void of checks and balances.

We wish the best for folks, and we hope this is the moment that people begin to make this world a better place by looking within at things that need change. Imagine what could accomplish if we all held hands in this struggle?

Until then, bigots beware, times up!

And for the rest of you willing to fight the real fight, see you in the streets.

Jacob Crawford and David Whitt of WeCopwatch

Statements from Anti-Media and Peaceful Streets Project.

Camera Fundraiser for Oakland Copwatchers

In August 2014 during the days following the murder of Mike Brown, a member of WeCopwatch flew out to Ferguson from Oakland, California. Amidst teargas and live fire, WeCopwatch and residents of Ferguson would fundraise over $1000 to get cameras into the hands of the community.

And the Copwatch movement in St. Louis took off from there.

As Spring descends upon us, Copwatch efforts in Ferguson continue to thrive, to the point that Ferguson is now helping support efforts back in Oakland. In recent months, several autonomous Copwatch projects have sprouted, and we think it’s a perfect time to get another camera drive in motion.

Our folks need cameras. They’ve been going out on regular patrols, conducting Know Your Rights / Copwatch trainings and taking a stand against one of America’s most brutal police forces: the Oakland Police Department.

Click Here to Donate to Our Camera Drive!

Screenshot 2015-04-07 21.40.34

Consider dropping some coin for our crew in Oakland. We’re hoping to purchase 10-15 cameras to help facilitate better documentation during our shifts.

Thanks for believing in us. See you in the streets.

Defend Afrika Town

While the city of Oakland flaunts its newly developed downtown area, this “revitalization project” has come at the cost of the residents of Oakland. Gentrification, along with a brutal police force, has displaced black and brown residents as a means to “clean up” the neighborhood. AfrikaTown is a community effort to provide a different alternative, one that supports and lifts the existing community rather than displace it. AfrikaTown is already an important and necessary aspect of West Oakland, where people come to gather, celebrate, and eat.

Within AfrikaTown is Qilombo, a community center that offers workshops and events to the residents. It has a bookstore, a free store, and a food distribution program. Adjacent to Qilombo is a garden that has been transformed over the last year to provide fresh vegetables for the community, with a beautiful mural that depicts struggle across the black diaspora. Hundreds of people have helped to bring AfrikaTown to life, and we need more support than ever to see it continue.

Come out and support so we can see AfrikaTown become an established community in our city.

WeCopwatch supports Africa Town.
See You in the Streets

Follow us
Like us on Facebook
Grab some Gear at http://wecopwatch/shop
Follow us on Twitter
Watch us on Youtube

WeCopwatch Investigates Dec 6. Police Actions in Berkeley


On December 6, 2014, the Berkeley Police, assisted by other agencies, attacked scores of demonstrators protesting the Grand Jury decisions on the Eric Garner and Mike Brown killings.

WeCopwatch, Berkeley Copwatch and the National Lawyers Guild are collaborating on a People’s Investigation into the Berkeley Police response on Dec. 6, 2014, and NLG lawyers are considering legal action and conducting confidential interviews.

If you experienced or witnessed specific acts of police violence please contact us

[ccf_form id=”2673″]


Live Streamers Make Great Informants

There are many ways to effectively document the movement while protecting the space, its movements and people’s privacy. Live Streaming is generally NOT one of them.

A common issue with Streamers is their display of entitlement, often citing the value of bringing the movement to the people. But Streamers have a hard time admitting that the police find their work more valuable then demonstrators.

In a world of voyeurism and exhibitionists, Streamers often get carried away, interpreting their role as being a narrator for the movement. They often film people without their consent, placing more value in presenting to their viewership, then protecting the group that is already taking risks by just getting out into the street to protest.

Continue Reading…

Copwatching 101 in current Anti Police Rebellions

Copwatchers are out in full in effect as Anti Police Uprisings continue to take place across the bay area. Here are a couple ideas of what to be looking for if you are out in the streets documenting police actions.

1. Before any police actions occur, get the identity of the officers present.
Names, badge numbers, any weapons, and which department they work for can all be very helpful down the line if any misconduct should occur.

2. Film police movements, formations and any police actions such as threats, attacks, or arrests. (this can help in getting someone’s case dismissed)

3. Film police dressed in civilian costumes.

Continue Reading…