The first Cop Watch started in the San Francisco Bay area by Van Jones, an American Maoist who later became Barack Obama’s “Green Jobs Czar” (and was thrown out after his extremist connections were exposed). It sounds like a good idea on the surface, ordinary citizens standing on the sidelines with video cameras keeping an eye on the police and reporting incidents of brutality and misconduct.
Unfortunately, many Cop Watch chapters degraded into what should have been called “Cop Hate”, with activists harassing police as they did their jobs. Vancouver DTES Cop Watch’s lowlight was when anti-police activist Jennifer Allan was filmed yelling out racist abuse at Constable Paul Ballantyne. The video is posted on this website’s YouTube page. There was also the incident where Allan harassed VPD going doughnut fishing.
Jamie Richardson was one of the leaders of Vancouver DTES Cop Watch, a man who has deep vitriolic hate against the police. Part of the reason for his hate may be his criminal tendencies, Richardson was arrested in July 2012 for allegedly forging transit passes. It seems his arrest only made him more angry, Richardson recently posted a veiled threat against Constable Ballantyne.
Richardson’s posting claimed that Ballantyne is “a thief” and “a sexual predator”, and that he knows “1st hand as a witness to his theft of monies from people on the DTES of Vancouver”. Richardson also claimed that Ballantyne “groped my JUNK”. Considering Richardson’s and Cop Watch’s history, these accusations should be viewed with great scepticism. Richardson states next that “he will however pay for the services / grope he took that day”.
Richardson’s statement indicated that Ballantyne has been transferred out of the DTES neighbourhood. He also says that “DTES Cop Watch has long lenses” He then, without explanation, says “Yes, I am a Racist too, I hate all those Bullies and Asshole [sic] who would take advantage and harm those that have the least to lose”.
Considering some of the vitriolic hate that’s come out of Richardson in the past, and his allegedly criminality, this threat should be taken seriously. Let’s hope that VPD do something to take action before someone gets hurt…
I’ll leave you today with a chart I’m working on mapping-out funding and connections between radicals in the US with Canadian radicals. The chart is a work in progress, and will be used for future articles about the connections between radicals in the Democratic Party and the NDP. But, as it includes Van Jones, seems like a good time for a preview…