Protesters demand body camera video from deadly Vallejo police shooting

Dozens turned out for a candlelight vigil in Vallejo Saturday night to remember a young man recently shot and killed by police.

The vigil was part of a wider demonstration protesting police violence against people of color. 

The Vallejo police department is now under review by the state attorney general, following the most recent deadly police shooting there earlier this month.

Protestors out Saturday evening say the department has a lengthy pattern of using deadly force that needs to stop.

Hundreds marched through downtown, demanding sweeping changes within Vallejo's police department, including the immediate halt to violence that has led to several deaths in recent years.

“There have been too many black and brown men who have bled on the streets.  And they get a free pass,” shouted attorney Adanté Pointer from a makeshift podium.

“Not one more. Not in our city,” said attorney Melissa Nold.

The diverse crowd chanted in front of Vallejo's police department as officers in riot gear stood by. Thick slabs of concrete separated the two.

A co-organizer of the demonstration says one demand is the firing of officers they call the fatal 14.

“The fatal 14 are the 14 officers who are currently still on VPD staff who have been part of more than one police shooting.  And have not been reprimanded or removed from the staff,” said Obinna Chinaka, co-organizer of the demonstration.  

The most recent officer-involved shooting happened June 2nd when 22-year-old Sean Monterrosa of San Francisco was shot outside a Walgreens on Redwood Street, during a night of looting.

An officer fired five shots from inside his cruiser, hitting Monterrosa who had a hammer in his pocket, which an 18-year veteran who fired the fatal shots possibly thought was a firearm.

Police have 45 days to release officer video of the incident unless it interferes with the investigation.

Vallejo police have given no such indication, so attorney John Burris says they need release video evidence.

“The public has a right to know. But more importantly, the families have a right to know,” said John Burris, the attorney representing Monterrosa’s family.

Organizers say the protest, sparked by the killing of George Floyd, now fueled by the death of Monterrosa, is part of what will be a sustained fight for change in Vallejo policing.

“We don't plan for this to be the last protest or this to be the last event.  We are going to come back over and over and over again,” said Chinaka.

After leaving the police department, demonstrators marched more than a mile to the Walgreens where Sean Monterrosa was shot, where they gathered there for a candlelight vigil.

The Vallejo Police Officers Association released a statement Saturday evening saying, “It should be concerning to people that small children are brought to protest with open-air marijuana smoking, foul, vile language, screaming, angry mob mentality, and profound anger directed at the police. How to have a civil discussion is what adults should be teaching children. 

Vallejo police did not respond to requests inquiring as to when they plan to release video from the Monterrosa shooting.