Mission Statement--Stolen Lives

A Record of Murder by Police and Border Patrol in the United States, 1990-1996

Revolutionary Worker #900, March 30, 1997

The "Stolen Lives" project is a joint effort of the National Lawyers Guild and the October 22 Coalition Against Police Brutality. It is being circulated at meetings of the October 22 Coalition now going on around the country. Two October 22 Coalition meetings held in N.Y. and L.A. have approved the Stolen Lives project and are beginning to work on it. To get more information and to participate contact:

Stolen Lives Project
c/o National Lawyers Guild
8124 West 3rd Street
Los Angeles, CA 90048
213 852-0578

October 22 Coalition Against Police Brutality
National Office
c/0 KHL Inc. Box 124
160 First Avenue, New York, NY 10009
212 387-8290 (voice mail)

Tax deductible contributions, earmarked "Stolen Lives" on check memo, can be made to:
October 22nd Coalition/IFCO
c/o KHL Inc. Box 124
160 First Avenue, New York, NY 10009



A Joint Project of the National Lawyers Guild and the October 22 Coalition to Stop Police Brutality, Repression and the Criminalization of a Generation

"Instead of protecting the public, police departments around the country are waging a campaign of violence and intimidation against the people in our communitites. Five years ago, we watched the television beating of Rodney King. Today we see Riverside Sheriffs brutally beating Mexican immigrants caught on videotape. In cities across the country, police kill unarmed people every month, yet the officers are rarely disciplined.... IT IS UP TO US TO STOP THE EPIDEMIC OF POLICE ABUSE AND VIOLENCE...."

From the October 22 call for a National Day of Protest
to Stop Police Brutality, Repression and the Criminalization of a Generation

Voices from October 22:

"Jose Antonio Gutirrez was murdered by a Los Angeles police officer, Mike Flavo. That's why we're here, and we ask and demand that there be justice, because if there's no justice, there's no peace. He was killed in cold blood by a cowardly murderer, and this is not the first one he's killed.

Antonio Gutirrez, uncle of Jose Antonio Gutirrez

"My friend was shot and killed 15 times. His name was Sebastian Ramirez. Let's get to the point. What do we want here? What do the people demand? We demand justice, right? That's what we want. What the people demand is that the cops be charged with killing a human being."

Igor, friend of Sebastian Ramirez who was killed by cops, L.A.

"These cops killed my husband in front of my two kids, in front of myself...These three officers are on the loose in the City of Chicago. I want justice for my husband."

Ilsa Guilln, whose husband Jorge was killed by Chicago police


The mission of the STOLEN LIVES project is to assemble a national listing of names of people killed by police and Border Patrol from 1990-1996. Hundreds are killed by the "official violence" of the police every year. These victims whose lives have been viciously cut short--all had lives, families and were part of our society. But rarely are these lives or names publicized. Nor are the real circumstances surrounding their deaths caused by police made known. Nor is the extent of this epidemic of police violence known.

STOLEN LIVES will expose and put a human face on this tragic situation for millions throughout the country--including many who are more or less insulated from the extent, depth, and systematic nature of police violence. STOLEN LIVES will give some dignity to the lives that have been lost. Though their lives have been stolen from us, we will not allow them to be forgotten.

STOLEN LIVES will help reveal to millions the reality of police terror and killing that is escalating in cities large and small across the United States, as well as along the U.S./Mexican border, and will contribute to bringing forth a political movement to stop it. It will link up and help fuse together into a lasting network the now relatively isolated and scattered organizations across the country who are dedicated to abolishing police brutality. This is especially important for our legal, civil and human rights groups who have been compiling statistics and facts regarding police abuse--STOLEN LIVES will provide a national forum for compiling, systematizing, sharing, exchanging and publicizing this knowledge and data and making it known throughout the country and throughout the world. Existing documentation and lists of names have already begun to be shared by various organizations in San Franciso/Oakland, Seattle, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, Chicago and New York.

Our aim is to build upon and help spread the growing resistance against police brutaltiy. And as a contribution to that, bring to life a mass movement around our STOLEN LIVES project. The necessity and possibility exist for diverse sections of society and many organizations to work together to make the STOLEN LIVES project a reality. And it must be done. From coast to coast, the families of those killed by police, lawyers groups and bar associations, civil rights organizations, students, artists, clergy and church groups, immigrant rights groups, journalists, political activists and many others have a critical role to play in compiling and publicizing, in many ways and forms, the LISTS OF NAMES of those that have been taken from us.

The compiling of lists will be done through a form which families of victims and others can fill out and send to the NATIONAL LAWYERS GUILD, and the OCTOBER 22 COALITION. Additional information for purposes of authentication, including photographs of the victim, witness statements, police reports, can be attached to the form.

Once the list of names of victims have been documented, assembled and authenticated the STOLEN LIVES project will bring forward a breadth of activities to make known the names of the stolen lives.

*Already a church group in Compton, CA organized an entire 8th grade class to make 200 sashes with NAMES of victims written upon them, and sent them to a local protest where they were worn by participants.

*Monuments, stage plays, poetry and other works of art which memorialize victims of police brutality will be created by artists and shown/read in public and private spaces.

*Mobile displays and speak-outs in communities will serve to bring forth a grassroots movement, including among many poor and oppressed people who live directly "under the gun" of police repression. An Internet World Wide Web site will be established to make these names known to a cross section of professionals, academics, students and many others (here and world wide) who are now using the this form of communication.

Contact the addresses above for forms, or use the following outline to create your own form to submit to the Stolen Lives Project.

The mission of the Stolen Lives Project is to assemble a national listing of names of people who have been killed by the police and Border Patrol. What do we want? What do the people demand? We demand justice! That's what we want.

Name of Victim, Age, Race, Date/Place of Victim's Birth, Date/Place ofVictim's Death

Do you have a photograph of victim? If so, please attach it.

Lawyer(s) Name, Lawyer's Address (Street, City, State, Zip), Phone

What happened?

Please describe any legal proceedings and their outcome. Please include names of agencies involved and where they are located.

Your Name, Address (Street, City, State, Zip), Phone number

Your Signature

Please include as much of the following information as possible to help us verify and compile what happened:
* Photograph(s) * Witness Statements * Police Reports * Other

(Use as many sheet(s) of paper as you need with the description of the history of the incident and include the date of your last contact with the agency handling your case if there is one).

Please send all Stolen Lives forms to: Stolen Lives Project, c/o National Lawyers Guild, 8124 West 3rd Street, Los Angeles, CA 90048, Phone: 213-852-0578