Undercover Fullerton Police Arrest ANOTHER Citizen-Journalist...in Pasadena?
Fullerton police are at it again! Alan James Redkey of inLeague Press traveled to Pasadena City Hall on Wednesday in a show of solidarity with Adolescents lead singer Tony Cadena. The punk-rock legend (and longtime educator) is in an ongoing fight with the local school district over the mistreatment of autistic students, including his son. Redkey, better known as "Anaheim" James, stood outside ready to protest when a number of plainclothes Fullerton police officers came to arrest him. His crime? Anaheim James failed to disperse, just as 10 others before him during a Jan. 18 protest in Fullerton over the Kelly Thomas verdicts.
"Anaheim" James films the police
Redkey's inLeague Press colleague Ryan Moore started filming the arrest live on his Ustream channel. One burly officer with a cheap fake beard probably bought at a second-rate costume shop chatted with Moore. "Do you know if it's a minor misdemeanor?" Moore asked. "Yeah, bail is only $7,500," the cop replied.
The Weekly tried following up with Fullerton spokesman Sergeant Jeff Stuart. He didn't bother responding after previously demanding questions be sent by email instead of phone, citing our "incredible slant." Can't win either way!
on bail of jail, Redkey gave an interview to the Weekly about how the whole ordeal started. "They tried to grab me a couple of times that day," he says of the Jan. 18 protest. "Never once did they say I was under arrest. Three months later, they sent me a citation in the mail for failure to disperse.
"They took me from Pasadena and booked me in Fullerton. They confiscated my Guy Fawkes mask as evidence," Redkey adds. "They took me to county after people started showing up and blowing up the phone lines." The irony is that Redkey worked on setting a date to go before a judge about the citation before leaving to Pasadena, only to get arrested.
The long trek has Fullertonians wondering, "Why Pasadena?" and whether police intended to also send a message to Cadena's band for their provocative new album-cover art, depicting a homeless man ready to whack a Manuel Ramos piñata head filled with God knows what. Whatever the reason, Redkey's cuffing follows a pretrial date last month for members of the so-called Fullerton 14. The Weekly profiled live-streaming citizen journalist PM Beers and how police reports framed her as a leader of an unruly mob of protesters disobeying unlawful assembly orders during the post-verdict protests. Beers filmed her own arrest on the evening of Jan. 18 for failure to disperse.
Anaheim James shows up in police reports from the protest as well. "REDKEY still hadn't dispersed the area as requested and continued to video tape us," wrote officer Barry Coffman. "He asked me how I was doing and asked me questions like, had I killed any innocent people today like Kelly Thomas."
Redkey is known to protesters as a fun-loving guy who's always sporting his long dreadlocks, a tie-dye shirt and Guy Fawkes mask. He's the kind of hippie who'd put a flower in the barrel of a weapon in the name of peace and love. Fullerton police apparently consider his inLeague Press citizen journalism so threatening they sent officers all the way to Pasadena just to snag him--CLASSY.
Follow Gabriel San Román on Twitter @dpalabraz