Family Seeks Justice For Son Teo Valencia, Killed By Newark Police Department
For Immediate Release: 7/13/16
Family of police shooting victim, Teo Valencia, demand justice for their loved one and the demilitarization of Newark Police Department.
Teo Valencia, a 23-year-old man of Mexican descent, was killed by a Newark Police Department officer on March 11, 2016. Valencia's family will gather with support of local activists to rally and march to demand justice for their loved one on Thursday, July 14, 2016, at the site of his killing in Newark.
The unnamed Newark police officer shot Teo Valencia in the back with an AR-15, a military-style assault rifle. Valencia may not have been aware there was an officer behind him as he was shot. Valencia's family further lists grievances against the City for what they claim to be an unjust pattern of behaviors based on the racial profiling of Teo. The family says they had not been notified of his death by authorities for over 24 hours, were not permitted to identify his body with the Coroner, and his death certificate contained incorrect information.
The family did not view his body until a full 8 days later at the funeral home. "We were not allowed a wake at the funeral home because of the racial profiling. They told us some of his friends might come and act 'crazy,'" said Christina Valencia, Teo Valencia's sister-in-law.
The family also says they feel threatened and intimidated by the Newark Police Department, following a raid on their home by several officers in SWAT gear, who were seeking evidence but found none, just days after the killing of Teo. The family maintains that Teo Valencia was racially profiled by Newark Police Department, as well as by the funeral home, which works closely with police.
The Valencia family makes the following demands:
Justice for Teo
- Retraction and public apology from the Newark Police Department
- Name, prosecute, and fire the officer who killed Teo
Demilitarize the Newark Police Department
- Removal of AR-15 Military-Style Assault Rifles and similar combat weapons
- Train the police to do their job with minimum use of force