Protests Show How Behavior of SJPD Cop Jared Yuen Point to Larger Problems in Policing

San Jose Officer Jared Yuen may have gone viral for taunting protesters, but his behavior—memorialized on camera for millions to see—was tame compared to his colleagues.

Since protests erupted Friday in San Jose as part of a national uprising against police brutality ignited by the public killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis Officer Derek Chauvin, the Capital of Silicon Valley has responded with sometimes brutal force.

Well over 100 people were arrested at the protests. (Photo by Kyle Martin)

Tear gas choked out crowds of masked protesters of all ages. Cops shoved people to the ground with batons. They pummeled observers with rubber bullets, which left massive purple bruises on people of all ages. Reporters who were just trying to do their jobs, were detained even after they clearly identified their credentials.

Rev. Jethroe Moore II, president of the San Jose-Silicon Valley NAACP, said San Jose PD escalated the violence—not the other way around.

“The kids protested and marched down the street, disrupting the system, peacefully,”  he said after the first demonstration. “Then the police channeled them all the way back down and headed back down Santa Clara Street, for whatever reason.”

That we’re in the middle of a deadly pandemic caused by a lung-choking disease didn’t stop San Jose police officers from using tear gas. (Photo by Kyle Martin)

How the protests devolved into skirmishes and scores of arrests reflects the broader problem of failed oversight, Rev. Moore said. San Jose Independent Police Auditor Shivaun Nurre runs an office with extremely limited powers. And every effort to expand them has been met with vociferous resistance by police unions.

The Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office is no better, if not worse. Though the Board of Supervisors created an independent monitor’s office to regulate the agency, the effort has been beset by years of delays and resistance.

“The San Jose Police Department should have independent oversight, the sheriff’s department should have independent oversight,” Moore went on to say. “The question is, why do they keep bucking at independent oversight? What are they afraid of? What’s inside that they don’t want people to look at? That’s the question. What is it about the system they don’t want people to see?”

Police responded with a heavy militarized presence to every demonstration. (Photo by Kyle Martin)

Moore, and many other community civil rights leaders, tried facilitating peace between protesters and advancing law enforcement. But on Friday, he found himself thrown into the skirmish as officers with batons and gas masks cornered protesters from East Santa Clara and Fifth streets, around City Hall and then out of the area.

After the city’s own residents were shot and battered by cops during the initial protest against their profession’s brutality, the bruises and scrapes were still not enough for city leaders to quell the militarized police presence. Saturday brought more of the same, with SJPD clashing with people demonstrating against the police violence that killed George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and countless others black and brown people.

“I saw a community particularly led by young people that were taking a courageous and righteous stance for the memory of George Floyd, for the memory of people killed locally by police violence, and a call for Black Lives Matter, a call for racial justice and honestly a call for their survival,” Raj Jayadevof Silicon Valley De-Bug said in an interview Sunday.

The protests were largely let by young people. (Photo by Kyle Martin)

Noting that there was a large representation youthful protesters in the crowds throughout the weekend, Jayadev said it’s young people leading the uprisings around the country because of how deeply they’re impacted by police killings.

“Who I saw out there were young people who had had enough and were not going to sit idly by and keep watching these videos of lynchings,” Jayadev said. “I would say, too, that I also saw police officers just indiscriminately using weapons of force—firing rubber bullets, firing tear gas canisters and putting a lot of people who are there to peacefully protest in the line of fire and in danger. And at the risk of pretty severe injury.”

Videos throughout the country have surfaced of bloody protesters bludgeoned by rubber bullets and tear gas canisters and police batons.

“They’re either aiming to hurt somebody or they’re shooting into a crowd, which means they have no idea who they’re hurting and either way, it’s a lose-lose,” Jayadev said. “I thought the police were antagonizing the community. I thought they were instigating at times. I certainly saw it first hand. People would be jabbed with those baton things out of nowhere. And also verbally.”

SJPD has yet to release a list of names of all the protesters who were arrested. (Photo by Kyle Martin)

According to the San Jose Police Department, officers made 38 arrests on Friday and 50 arrests on Saturday. On Friday the city assigned to the protest 327 SJPD officers, who teamed up with another 91 personnel from 13 outside agencies. On Saturday, there were 195 San Jose cops and 39 deputies from the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office.

On each day of the protests, an untold number of civilians were injured from rubber bullets, choked by tear gas and dispersed by flash bangs deployed to disperse what were meant to be peaceful gatherings. Jayadev himself got hit in the hand, and he knows several others who were hit too. People all over the country were targeted and brutalized by police for protesting police violence against community members.

While SJPD Chief Eddie Garcia condemned the behavior of one officer so far, Jayadev said the problem extends far beyond a few “bad apples.”

“The violence is endemic to that system,” he said, “and that’s what has become apparent when you look at the experiment of peaceful protest in different cities. Why is it that we’re seeing a recurring theme? It’s not like there’s something in the groundwater that’s different in New York from San Jose. … There’s absolutely a causal link from what you and I saw downtown, what we saw Officer [Jared] Yuen do, and what we saw officers in other cities do. It is the nature of police and policing.”

Some protesters lobbed water bottles and traffic cones at the cops, who responded with disproportionate force that left people bloodied and bruised. (Photo by Kyle Martin)

22 Comments

  1. https://bit.ly/2TUOybS

    > Since protests erupted Friday in San Jose as part of national uprising against police brutality ignited by the public killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis Officer Derek Chauvin, the Capital of Silicon Valley has responded with sometimes brutal force.

    Or, maybe not.

    Maybe it was just an AntiFA sponsored National Day of Looting.

    • Please post evidence of “AntiFA sponsored National Day of Looting”. Is this a conspiracy of some kind? Please describe. What is “AntiFA”? Where is “AntiFA”? Who is “AntiFA”?

    • You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again, You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again, You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again, You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again, You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again, You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again, You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again, You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again, You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again, You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again, You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again,You say “looting”, I say “BLACK MEN MURDERED BY COPS”, again

  2. I have insider knowledge of these two departments, SJPD and the Sheriff’s, both are equally corrupted and have been for a very long time. They both protect elements that engage in Domestic Violence and Crimes against children. The reason they have been successful at this is because the chief of police and the Sheriff have been successful politicians too. They have engaging creating friendly relation with the county supervisors and JEFF Rosen, DA. It has been a web of corruption for a very long time. WHO IS SHOCK ABOUT THIS? No one…I am grateful they where publicly exposed through social media.

  3. Again great reporting, please note it is only possible because people now know to record the police. Before there was a cell phone in every hand , this conduct was described only in the written reports of these same police officers and used by prosecutors. Now the future juries are seeing police officers through new lenses. It will be impossible for a juror to scrub these images from their mind as they listen to police officer testimony. The crack in the #thinblue line continues. I recorded the police on Friday because people need to do this at all times. Do not be polite or complicit when it comes to exercising this right. Before cameras were everywhere, people had to describe this conduct to reporters, now they have the photos. Now they are keeping the receipts! Here are two of mine from Friday in San Jose. These videos are made to provide transparency and accountability to not only the police, but our local DA who uses police officer testimony as the core of every criminal case. Just think about what if George Floyd had not died! He would still be a victims of the culture, but no cameras would be making videos that could go viral.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZameoFn-uQQ
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aA5u7X5B0YE

  4. > Just think about what if George Floyd had not died!

    Primitive people cannot have two thoughts in their mind at the same time.

    It’s the definition of primiiivism..

    Two things can both be right at the same time.

    Because the death of George Floyd is bad, it doesn’t mean that cops are bad;

    A “bad cop” is not the same as “bad cops”.

    Use your big modern, multiprocessing, neolithic brain and think two things at once. Not your old, small, primitive, one dimensional paleolithics brain which can only think of one thing at a time.

    Cops are ESSENTIAL to civilization because they prevent foragers from disrupting production.

    The “George Floyd rioters” are disruptions of production and necessarily MUST be controlled and suppressed by police.

    George Floyd. Good. Cops. Good.

    Use your big brain.

      • > Your’s is the definition of a content free post. You manage to put a lot of words in, while simultaneously saying nothing of use. Typical authoritarian.

        You think it’s a “content free post” because you have your content filter on too tight. Nothings getting through.

        I suspect this has been a problem for you for a long time.

      • On the subject of tragic deaths of innocent black people, I did a Google search on “Hutu Tutsi: conflict”.

        The result:

        “What caused the conflict between Hutu and Tutsi?

        Class Warfare.

        Generally, the Hutu-Tutsi strife stems from class warfare, with the Tutsis perceived to have greater wealth and social status (as well as favoring cattle ranching over what is seen as the lower-class farming of the Hutus).”

        – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

        What do you know!

        The Tutsi’s were “producers” and had cattle (they were “capitalists”).

        The Hutu’s were just protesting the white skin privilege of the Tutsi’s and unequal distribution of wealth — and presumably fighting for “social justice”.

  5. Please tell us oh ace reporter how one cop name calling points to larger problems in policing. What an idiotic thing to say. Your headline is basically saying that if one cop calls someone a bad name it means the entire department is bad. You probably also believe that the entire 800 member Minneapolis PD is bad because officer Chauvin killed George Floyd.
    There is no question in my mind that Officer Yuen’s remark and his attitude are unacceptable police behavior in the face of a peaceful crowd. You can be sure PC Eddie will make sure Yuen is reprimanded, and maybe switched out of any riot control duties until he does his penance. That would be appropriate, But that should be the end of it.
    So many of the signs the protesters are carrying say something like “justice for George Floyd”. Do they even know that Chauvin has been charged with multiple counts—murder, manslaughter…? Do they prefer he be dragged through the streets?
    However, there is one potential problem on the horizon in Minneapolis. In many counties in America the head DA is a more successful politician than a highly effective prosecutor. They are elected in many counties. In others they are appointed by a board of supervisors. In either case, it’s political. Since the Minneapolis head DA has decided to grab all the headlines for himself by trying the case against Chauvin personally, there is an elevated chance that Chauvin will be acquitted due to that lack of sufficient prosecutorial skill. It’s just another political move to advance his own career. Maybe he’s looking to be the next Minnesota Attoney General, which is a possibility if he obtains a conviction. But if he fails to get a conviction, those “justice for George Floyd” signs will be traded in for something else, and the violence we are seeing now will be chiild’s play compared to what will happen then. No-one will be safe on the streets. We will be a nation of Reginald Denny’s, and the snowflakes will wish they hadn’t been so strongly against gun ownership.

  6. Amidst this chaos heaven fobid a private person files a civil lawsuit against a cop and SJPD.
    ..CSJ cops should be required to carry civil lawsuit personal insurance so that cops don’t add to adverse economic harm to the city

  7. Anybody can file a lawsuit, even if the allegations are BS. All the friends and family of these jag offs always tell the press what a nice, quiet, law abiding person this criminal is, even though the has a significant criminal record.
    The particular problem in SJ and SCC is that the city attorneys and the county counsel have no cojones, so they settle bogus cases, for millions sometimes. After all, it’s not their personal money, it’s just taxpayer money, which to them has the value of Monopoly money. The government lawyers need to do what the insurance companies did decades ago—take every bogus excessive force and civil rights case to trial. It took a while in the insurance arena, but the frivolous cases stopped getting filed. Despite the huge increase in California’s population over the last 30years, the annual number of civil lawsuits of all kinds is lower than it was 30:years ago. Politicians and government lawyers need to treat taxpayer money as if it was coming out of their personal bank accounts.

  8. Of course no where in this story do they talk about the rocks that were thrown at officers. Full water bottles can also hurt. Those officers are going home bruised and bloodied too.
    The vast majority of police officers are great people. They are husbands, wife’s, sons, daughters mothers and fathers. They have taken on a job that the vast majority of the population would not. They go in to the profession to help people, to keep people from harm. These officers, the ones there for all the right reasons, don’t like the bad cops either. They don’t want to work with men and women that give their profession a bad name. Unfortunately unions often prevent departments from being able to release bad officers, much the same can be said for unions in all professions. Let’s stop blaming all the officers for the actions of a few. Every profession out there, Doctors, Lawyers, Firefighters, Engineers, Mechanics, all have bad actors and all have the ability to do grievous harm because of those bad people. Take an honest look at the situation for once. Stop just listening to one side..use common sense and take a good look at the whole picture.

    • > Of course no where in this story do they talk about the rocks that were thrown at officers.

      “They” are binary thinkers. They can only think about one think at a time, and it has to be GOOD/BAD.

      If they talked about the rocks that were thrown at officers, they wouldn’t be able to talk about the other thing.

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