Suit: Union City letting gang target blacks

By: Henry K. Lee (San Francisco Chronicle)
January 28, 2010


Union City police and school officials have failed to protect African American students from a Latino gang, whose members killed a black youth in 2007 at a middle school and then shot at his friends last weekend in Hayward, according to attorneys who filed a class-action lawsuit Wednesday.

The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Oakland, accuses Union City police and officials with the New Haven Unified School District of doing nothing to prevent African American students from suffering “severe and pervasive racial harassment.” Gang members were responsible for many of the incidents on campus or near schools, according to the suit filed by 10 African American former students of the school district.

In a statement Wednesday, Union City police and city officials said they have a “long-standing record of being responsive to supporting and defending the rights of all members of our diverse community.” School officials declined to comment.

The most serious incident cited in the lawsuit happened in December 2007, when Vernon Eddins, 14, was shot and killed in front of Barnard-White Middle School on Whipple Road in Union City. No arrests have been made.

On Saturday, eight African American youths, one of whom was wearing a shirt with Eddins’ picture on it, were shot at while at the Southland Mall in Hayward, said the plaintiffs’ attorney, Pamela Price. No one was injured.

No arrests have been made, said Hayward police Sgt. Steve Brown.

Although it happened in Hayward, the weekend shooting is the result of a “situation that bubbled out of Union City,” Price said at a news conference at the NAACP’s office in Hayward.

Hayward police responded quickly to the incident, while their counterparts in Union City have not moved fast enough to stem violence against black youths by Latino gang members, Price said.

In their statement, Union City officials said, “Youth violence is an area-wide issue not respecting municipal boundaries.”

Price said her clients are not gang members but are treated as such by Union City police. Officers often ask them, “What did you do to start this?” when “they did nothing,” Price said. “To me, that’s racial.”

Eddins’ mother, Angelique Paige, filed a federal civil rights lawsuit last year against police and the New Haven school district, accusing them of “failing to adequately discourage” racial violence. The suit is pending.

Paige cried at Wednesday’s news conference as Price said gang members based in Union City’s Decoto neighborhood had gloated about Eddins’ slaying on a MySpace page.

African American students and their families have been told by police that if they don’t like the situation, they should move, said attorney John Burris, who is also representing the plaintiffs.

E-mail Henry K. Lee at hlee@sfchronicle.com

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17 Comments for “Suit: Union City letting gang target blacks”

  1. This neighborhood must be predominantly Hispanic, because they usually do punk shit like this when this is the situation! It really takes a bad mother fucker to shoot a kid in middle school! If there are any black gangs or just no non sense type of blacks, then they need to get at those ass holes, because that shit will not stop until you do! I’ve seen it go down like this, and when the real soldiers come out and whip their asses they don’t know how to handle it! So, either they break up or just leave the blacks alone!!!

  2. Union City Citizen

    these black people come in from oakland and disrespect the locals. Why cant they just move in and live at peace. But no they come here and start problems, now one of them are dead and the families are trying to sue the pd. what about black men killing latinos, or robbing others. do you call for help than? In oakland they yell “lovel mixxon is a hero and say f the police” over here they say “oh we need protection” complete ignorance. and clay if the situation was the other way around there is not worries there is it? keep your ignorance to yourself. move out of our city and go back to oakland and stay there. you people are not wanted here, not blacks….but oakland citizens.

  3. jay. h

    it will never end black on brown, brown on black rascism rules california. its a beeutiful thing for the white man. soon you all will wipe each other out and we can have our counrty back. hurry up and finish.

  4. ManoRoja

    Vato thats not nice. you just haten cause we look gangsta and you look like that skinny guy on the Scooby Doo cartoon.

  5. Orlando

    EXCUSE ME MISS FOBBS, SANDERS, AND LILLIE RAY. WHAT PLANET DO YOU LIVE IN? THIS VIOLENCE THAT IS SO-CALLED “TARGETED” AT BLACKS IS NOTHING NEW TO LATINOS. WHAT HAPPENS TO YOUR KIDS IN ONE SCHOOL IN UNION CITY HAPPENS TO US IN 30 SCHOOLS EVERYDAY IN OAKLAND. IT DOESN’T FEEL GOOD WHEN ITS YOUR KIDS GETTING SHOT UP, DOES IT? YOU PEOPLE LOVE TO USE THE RACE CARD FOR ANYTHING THAT DOESN’T GO YOUR WAY. HOW SAD THAT PEOPLE FALL FOR THAT S**T. YOU PEOPLE MAKE IT SEEM LIKE YOUR KIDS ARE JUST INNOCENT VICTIMS. I’LL TELL YOU WHAT’S MESSED UP. A YOUNG FATHER (LATINO) GETTING KILLED EXECUTION-STYLE IN FRONT OF HIS KIDS AND WIFE, A HARD WORKER STRUGGLING EVERYDAY TO PUT FOOD ON THE TABLE AND A ROOF OVER HIS FAMILY’S HEAD, BY SOME LAZY BLACK PUNKS WHO ACT LIKE THE WORLD OWES THEM SOMETHING, THEY WANT ALL THE GOOD THINGS IN LIFE WITHOUT WORKING FOR THEM. I’VE SEEN BLACK DRUG DEALERS THAT MAKE A LOT OF $$$ SELLING THERE PRODUCT AND STILL HAVE THE AUDACITY TO GO AND APPLY FOR GENERAL ASSISTANCE. NOW THAT IS A REAL PIECE OF S**T THERE. NO BODY OWES YOU PEOPLE JACK S**T!! “POOR VICTIMS”. I SHOULD START YELLING “RACISM”!!!, EVERY TIME THAT MY PEOPLE ARE NOT PROTECTED BY THE POLICE LIKE YOU GUYS ARE SAYING THAT EVERYONE IS CONSPIRING AGAINST BLACKS IN UNION CITY. MY PEOPLE ARE A STRONG AND RESILIENT PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT LOOKING FOR HANDOUTS OR HOW TO GET OVER ON THE GOVERNMENT. MY PEOPLE WANT TO WORK LIKE WE ALWAYS HAVE AND WILL CONTINUE. NO JEALOUSY OR RESENTMENT TOWARDS MY PEOPLE WILL EVER STOP OUR PROGRESS. DOES STEALING GENERAL ASSISTANCE OR FINDING SOMEONE TO SUE ALL THE TIME OVER “RACISM” COUNT AS WORK? TO YOU IT DOES. I LOOK AT YOU THREE AND I SEE A TRIO HAS FALSELY PLAYED THE VICTIM ROLL ALL THERE LIVES.

    • muha

      We built this country bitch! Go crawl bact into that underground tunnel u used to get here illegally wetback. Take your ass home. you bitches always flying that piece a shit mexican flag here in the U.S., if u love Mexico so much take your ass back and stop stealing american jobs and tax payers money from welfare u stankin bitches shitty bitches.

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  7. chris

    this shit is all none sense. black and mexicans just need to stop killing eachother that shit has been going on forever. what is the point to all this who really wins when one race gets shot and another gets life? man some of you guys on here need to wake up. stop feeding the kids that bullshit for they end up n prison or dead and when that happens it doesn’t matter what race you are. kuz if you die over that bullshit you aint comming back or you gonna go to prison and be someones bitch. I been to prison and all you see is a bunch of grown ass men disciplining another grown man. if you a parent ask ya self for one moment do you want ya kid to live that lifestyle?? and you can act hard if you want but that aint the lifestyle for anyone. people need to be trying to move they kid out of a fucked up environment and teach them that race don’t matter anymore. it’s a new day.

  8. Real ish

    SHUT THE FUCK UP[ ORLNDO LYIN ASS MEXICAN MUTHAFUCKA. MEXICANS BRING THE MUTHAFUCLKIN DRUGS HERE, ARE THE BIGGEST PRISON POP. IN CALIFORNIA, KILL PEOPLE SELL DRUGS, ON WELFARE, SCAM SHIT, TAKE AMERICAN MONEY, SEND AMERICAN MONEY BACK TO MEXICO, TRY TO TURN CALIFORNIA INTO MEXICO. THEY COME FROM A SICK ASS CORRUPT VIOLENT COUNTRY AND THEY WANNA TALK ABOUT OTHER PEOPLE AND CLAIM THEY ARE GOOD HARD WORKING PEOPLE? SHUT THE FUCK UP YOU LYIN BITCH!

  9. shut up

    IM A LATINO MALE WHO HAS BEEN GETTIN MESSED WIT BY THESE FKIN COONS MY HOLE LIFE IN UNION CITY THEY COME OVER HERE EXPECTING US TO BOW DOWN BECUZ THEYRE FROM “OAKLAND” NONE OF THIS WUD HAVE HAPPENED IF BLACK PPL HAD RESPECT FOR OUR CITY AND OUR PPL I GOT MY HEAD BUSTED, RAN OVER, SHOT AT,AND CHASED BY BLACK PPL IN UNION CITY POLICE NEVER DID SHIT BUT BLAME ME! CAN U BELIVE THAT? I DONT FEEL SORRY FOR VERNON OR ANY OTHER BLACK VICTIM THEY STARTED ALL THE PROBLEMS IN THIS CITY. DECOTO IS NOT TO BLAME THEY ARE JUST DEFENDING THEMSELVES AND THEIR COMMUNITY. FUCK BLACK PPL U ASSHOLES RUINED MY LIFE I COULDNT EVEN GO TO SCHOOL NO MORE BECUZ OF THESE IGNORANT FKIN NIGGGERS.

  10. shut up

    IM A LATINO MALE WHO HAS BEEN GETTIN MESSED WIT BY THESE FKIN COONS MY HOLE LIFE IN UNION CITY THEY COME OVER HERE EXPECTING US TO BOW DOWN BECUZ THEYRE FROM “OAKLAND” NONE OF THIS WUD HAVE HAPPENED IF BLACK PPL HAD RESPECT FOR OUR CITY AND OUR PPL I GOT MY HEAD BUSTED, RAN OVER, SHOT AT,AND CHASED BY BLACK PPL IN UNION CITY POLICE NEVER DID SHIT BUT BLAME ME! CAN U BELIVE THAT? I DONT FEEL SORRY FOR VERNON OR ANY OTHER BLACK VICTIM THEY STARTED ALL THE PROBLEMS IN THIS CITY. DECOTO IS NOT TO BLAME THEY ARE JUST DEFENDING THEMSELVES AND THEIR COMMUNITY. FUCK BLACK PPL U ASSHOLES RUINED MY LIFE I COULDNT EVEN GO TO SCHOOL NO MORE BECUZ OF THESE IGNORANT FKIN NIGGGERS.

  11. Decoto Gangsta

    fk vernon he was a btch anyways

  12. cripcuz

    fuck you cuz meet me on whipple you bitch ass fuccin pussy you jus mad cuz your bitch ass always gettin fucced up

  13. Little Decoto

    These people from Jokeland need to know who there Masters are bow and show respect to Decoto and UC.

    UC is supreme above all. UC owns anything that is Jokeland related.

    We are the biggest and toughest in all of the nation.

  14. LDR

    I’ve grown up in Decoto and attended JLHS. I can honestly say that there are ppl from both sides that start problems without bing provoked. Growing up, I saw Decoto gangsters as an exclusive security team and police force for our community. Alot of Oakland youth do come and start problems, and they’re not even technically supposed to BE here-yet, they’re not hesitant to play the race card when they don’t get their way. I do have many African American friends and am not prejudiced, because the Black friends that I do have are good ppl and are productive citizens. I’m not sorry about Vernon; only that he shouldn’t have been where he was. My dad was a member of VGD, my older brother is a respected member of LDG, but I’m not as closed minded as they are, so I can say that I want all unneccesary violence to cease. I want to be able to walk home from wherever I am and not have to think that I could get jumped or killed along the way.

    • CaliRes

      I went to Bernard, New Haven, and Logan and we didn’t have these problems back then. Blacks and Latinos got along and, if there were issues, they weren’t racial. What in the hell happened? My family moved to UC from Oakland and it was all good. I agree with you – there are people from both sides who start this. I remember when my brother got in a fight with a young Latino and, guess what? When it was over, it was over. There was no retaliation. There was nothing racial about it. They disagreed and, because they were kids, they fought – as kids do – and that was that. People today have it twisted and lack basic human decency. I don’t want to see anyone else killed, Funny thing, I’m still in touch with some of the Latinos from when I was young and it’s still all good. This younger generation – on both sides – needs to wake up and get it together before they exterminate each other.

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