[Hpn] Homeless see COURT ORDER for LAPD to stop 'harassing' them fwd

Tom Boland wgcp@earthlink.net
Fri, 8 Dec 2000 13:08:44 -0800 (PST)


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FWD  Associated Press - AP Wire Service - Dec 07, 2000

     HOMELESS SEE ORDER FRO LA COPS TO STOP 'HARASSING' THEM

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Advocates for the homeless passed out copies
Wednesday of a judge's temporary restraining order barring police
from rousting residents of downtown's Skid Row.

U.S. District Court Judge Lourdes Baird issued the order Friday
while she decides a civil rights lawsuit claiming the Los Angeles
Police Department is purposefully harassing the indigent. On
Tuesday, the judge issued a written version of the temporary order.

There was no comment from the Police Department. Officer Don
Cox, a police spokesman, said he had not seen a copy of the order.
However, city officials have said previously that officers are
simply doing their duty to protect all people in the area from
crime, including the estimated 11,000 homeless who live on Skid
Row.

Social service agency workers such as Alice Callaghan of Las
Familias del Pueblo, who were busy handing out copies of the order
Wednesday, said they would also monitor complaints brought against
officers.

``Homeless people have civil rights and the city and its police
cannot abridge those rights simply because they consider the
homeless to be bad for business or otherwise publicly
troublesome,'' Callaghan said.

The order said police cannot stop the homeless without
reasonable suspicion, demand proof of identification on threat of
arrest, search possessions without reasonable suspicion, order the
homeless to vacate an area unless the homeless are obstructing or
blocking pedestrians, confiscate and destroy property without
notice or issue loitering citations to the homeless.

The Nov. 20 lawsuit brought by the American Civil Liberties
Union of Southern California on behalf of 23 homeless people and
three social service agencies, names Police Chief Bernard Parks and
Capt. Stuart Maislin as defendants.

AP-WS-12-07-00 0148EST
Received  Id AP1003420E664105 on Dec 07 2000 00:49

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