The Sleepy Lagoon Case

The Sleepy Lagoon Case - Davila The Sleepy Lagoon Case and...

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Davila The Sleepy Lagoon Case and the Injustice we face today Elisiel Davila Section: McLean R 6:00-6:50 pm April 19, 2010 The Sleepy Lagoon Murder Case was a trial where there was 600 Latino youths accused of murdering Jose Diaz. I argue that all the juries and the judge were for the most part white so it was “nearly impossible to receive a fair- impartial trial (Armbruster 10).” “Judge Charles William Fricke was known as “San Quentin” Fricke because, “he sentenced more prisoners to the state penitentiary than any other judge in California history” (Armbruster 11)”. Since he was so cruel, it was no surprise when Judge Charles threw eight Mexican-American women into "jail" in Ventura. To make it any worse than it was, the media alleged “hysterically and erroneously claims that a Mexican “crime wave” had overwhelmed the “city of Angels”.” Out of the six hundred Latinos, twenty-one Chicano youths were indicted on the murder charges and placed on trial. The courtroom was small and during the trial the defendants were not allowed to sit near or to communicate with their attorneys. Three of the defendants were convicted of first- degree murder and sentenced to life in prison; nine were convicted of second-degree murder and sentenced to "five-to-life", five were convicted of assault and released for time served, and five were acquitted in January 1943. In October, 1944, the Court of Appeal of the State of California reversed the convictions, thanks to Alice McGrath, member of the communist party, who was the executive secretary of the Sleepy Lagoon Defense Committee from 1942 to 1944. The Sleepy Lagoon Defense Committee wouldn’t have been created if it weren’t for the great support of East Los Angeles, California. Different types of races gathered up to support their fellow “brothers and sisters” as if they were all one big family or coalition to resist the injustice that was being done. The two main factors to make the appealing of the murder case were Alice and George Shibley. They both worked really hard to make this appealing possible. Alice, at first, thought she wouldn’t be up for the challenge, but then one day when the ruling was announced, she was “shocked.” “Shortly thereafter, George took her to meet the defendants
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Davila for the first time and it was from that moment that she decided to “stay with the case until the
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This note was uploaded on 03/05/2012 for the course CHICANO ST 101 taught by Professor Hen during the Summer '12 term at UC Irvine.

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The Sleepy Lagoon Case - Davila The Sleepy Lagoon Case and...

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