LOS ANGELES, Calif. – Civil rights attorney Carl Douglas announced all criminal charges against Black Lives Matter Los Angeles leader Dr. Melina Abdullah filed by City Attorney Mike Feuer’s office have been dismissed.
“We celebrate the City Attorney’s decision to dismiss all charges against Dr. Abdullah,” said Douglas. “While the dismissal of all charges against this noble warrior is a great victory, the battle for justice is not over. Dr. Abdullah’s rights were trampled upon on May 8, 2018, when she was falsely accused of grabbing an LAPD sergeant during a Police Commission hearing. She was arrested for that false allegation, two of the charges that were dismissed today concern that wrongful arrest. So, we intend to vindicate this violation of her civil rights by filing a federal civil rights lawsuit and exposing a corrupt police officer who wanted to silence this strong voice of change.”
In February, Dr. Abdullah was charged with eight criminal counts related to her anti-police activism, including battery on an LAPD officer and faced up to a year in prison if convicted. (Court Case No. 8CJ10572).
Supporters of Dr. Abdullah, who is a California State University Los Angeles professor, say that the charges are malicious and discriminatory and are a direct attempt to criminalize Black protest.
“The City Attorney’s decision to prosecute Black protestors also fits into a much larger picture in which the federal government is attempting to criminalize Black people and even label them as ‘terrorists’ and ‘extremists’ for daring to struggle against police brutality, abuse, and killings,” said Patrisse Cullors.
Dr. Abdullah’s charges included one count of battery on an officer, resisting arrest, refusing to disperse, and interfering or obstructing a public business establishment. Other charges included three counts of unlawfully disturbing and breaking up an assembly and meeting and two counts of unlawfully and intentionally interfering with the business of the LAPD commission.
Dr. Abdullah has said that her attendance and demonstration at meetings of the police commission are in an advocacy capacity for families who have lost loved ones to the police, experienced police brutality and excessive force.
Attorney Carl Douglas reinstated that Dr. Abdullah was not going to plea to assaulting an officer.
“I gave you my word that there would be no plea to an assault on a police officer,” Douglas said. “If we couldn’t reach a resolution that satisfied my client, we were prepared to go to trial to expose the corruption of the LAPD.”