BNHR to Hold a Community Protest to Call For Justice and Accountability in the Murders of Erik Salas-Sanchez and George Floyd

Attending members of the community will demand an immediate stop to the brutality and impunity of the El Paso Police Department and law enforcement authorities across the country

The Border Network for Human Rights (BNHR) will lead a community protest TODAY, Monday, June 8th, at 11:30 A.M outside of El Paso City Hall. BNHR is demanding an immediate stop to police brutality across the nation, in particular by the El Paso Police Department for its long history of unnecessary use of force. Social distancing and protective COVID-19 measures will be observed during the protest.

This action comes in light of the recent death of George Floyd, implicating a Minnesota officer; and as the family of Erick Salas-Sanchez awaits for a trial by jury date, after he was fatally shot by an El Paso officer in 2015.  

Salas-Sanchez was gunned down by El Paso Police officer Mando Kenneth Gomez during a house call following a presumably mental health crisis. Though Gomez was acquitted by a jury from manslaughter charges last year, the Salas-Sanchez family filed a lawsuit that demands a closer look into “poor training and discipline standards” at El Paso Police Department. Chief Greg Allen has been leading that law enforcement agency since 2008. U.S. District Judge Philip Martínez has ruled that there is “reasonable evidence” against Chief Allen to proceed with a trial by jury for this case.

BNHR is also demanding justice in the recent case of George Floyd, who died last Memorial Day in Minneapolis, after being pinned down against the pavement while handcuffed, with Officer Derek Chauvin’s knee on his neck for nearly nine minutes. His death was ruled as a homicide due to “cardiopulmonary arrest complicating law enforcement subdual, restraint, and neck compression,” according to the Hennepin County medical examiner. Other three officers are implicated and have also been arrested in the case.

“We’ve had enough of the abuse and excessive force from local, state, and federal law enforcement agents, particularly against immigrants and racial minorities. We simply won’t tolerate anymore this continued disregard to civil rights and the lack of accountability that permeates among police departments across the country. It is especially shameful to admit that the El Paso Police Department is no exception, where many officers seem to believe that they are above the law and their wrongdoings can be shielded by their own. We cannot condone impunity, and today we will be demanding the immediate and direct intervention from the local government to put a stop to police brutality in our border communities and in the rest of the nation,” said Fernando García, Executive Director of BNHR.

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