Movement Against Police Brutality in Gainesville
Alachua Committee Against Police Brutality
Alexis Kohilakis, Jimmy Fishhawk, and others from the Alachua Committee Against Brutality, a group of concerned Gainesville residents created in response to the events of "The Fest Riot" on Nov. 1st, 2009 (see below for details), will present on their goals and the lessons they've trying to achieve them. They will cover the specifics of what to do when an activist faces legal charges, with a focus on dealing with negative media coverage. Using video clips, they will also talk about their efforts to place a temporary ban on the use of tasers in Florida until a statewide "proper usage" policy is adopted. Finally, in regards to creating a Citizens Police Review Board, they will discuss different types of review boards and advisory committees, how to build coalitions with seemingly divergent groups, the process of getting a referendum on the ballot, and ways of dealing with the media and gaining public support such as holding press conferences, writing letters to the editors, and staying in the public eye. http://www.myspace.com/againstpolicebrutality
“The Fest Riot:” In the early morning there was an altercation at a block party as part of an unofficial Fest house show between the Gainesville Police Department and partygoers, resulting in the arrest of five people and the deployment of Tasers by multiple police officers. The ACAB feels the police did not properly de-escalate the situation, something the GPD does regularly at students’ parties and sports related events, and that the partygoers were targeted because they looked “alternative” and not like UF Gators fans. Their actions resulted in actual and potential harm to both officers and partygoers. These events were dubbed “The Fest Riot” by the media.