Die-In Marks Anniversary of Perez Lopez Shooting

Demonstrators stage their own deaths at the SF Hall of Justice in campaign to seek charges for the shooting of Amilcar Perez Lopez.

Image: Joe Kukura/SF Weekly

Even though it’s been two full years since the 2015 shooting of 21-year-old Guatemalan immigrant Amilcar Perez Lopez, a coalition of activists and community leaders continues to demand his case be brought to a trial. To mark the two-year anniversary of Perez Lopez’s shooting, activists held a Monday, Feb. 27 die-in at the steps of the San Francisco Hall of Justice just outside District Attorney George Gascon’s office to amplify their call for charges against the SFPD.

Perez Lopez was shot by police on Feb. 26, 2015, and the San Francisco Police Department maintains that Perez Lopez was charging at two police officers with a knife. After an autopsy showed that Perez Lopez had been shot in the back, activists and community leaders have been urging District Attorney Gascon to file charges against the officers. Gascon has not ruled out filing charges, and an investigation is still ongoing.

The Monday afternoon die-in drew about three dozen demonstrators, including San Francisco Public Defender Jeff Adachi and Supervisor Hillary Ronen, who now represents the district where the shooting occurred.

“We have to look at the case within a larger context,” Ronen tells SF Weekly. “The immigrant community in San Francisco and all around the country is under attack, from everyone from the president of the United States of America to local speculators who continue to drive the displacement crisis.”

“You have several police murders,” she says. “There hasn’t been, in the case of Amilcar, a decision after two years. And that’s what I call a systemic breakdown.”

This was not the first demonstration calling for charges in the Perez Lopez shooting, and a grassroots group called Mothers on the March has been gathering at Noon every Friday at the Hall of Justice to speak out on the matter. They will be there again this Friday, urging that charges be brought in the Perez Lopez case and a number of other shootings by SFPD officers.

 

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