By Ed Dalton
Austin Police Department murdered a 42-year-old Black Latino man in Southeast Austin last night. Michael Ramos, affectionately known as ‘Strick’ by local residents, was gunned down by police after having committed no crime.
Videos of the extrajudicial murder began surfacing on social media rapidly and activists who live in the area agitated for a quick protest response.
The murder took place at the Rosemont Oak Valley apartment complex near E. OItorf and Pleasant Valley. According to a tenant of the complex who sees him frequently, Ramos was always polite and not a problem. There will be a protest and vigil tonight at 6pm.
An eyewitness to the police murder told Tribune of the People that Ramos had his hands up in a gesture of compliance when the police approached him and his girlfriend in a car. The police then fired a beanbag at Ramos who returned to his vehicle and pulled out slowly, going in the opposite direction of the police. A different officer responded by opening fire on Ramos with an AR-15 rifle. She recounts police firing between 6 and 10 shots and Ramos dying on the scene.
“They physically came ready for war,” she said regarding the police, “[Ramos] didn’t have no weapons in his hand, had his hands up the whole entire time.” According to witnesses Ramos was shouting “don’t kill me, don’t kill me” just before the police murdered him.
The people of Southeast Austin were prompt to respond to activists’ agitation and left their homes into the streets in protest, chanting “FTP, Fuck The Police!” and “we all saw, we all heard, APD are murderers!” Masked protesters advanced upon the police officer guarding the crime scene, causing him to inch back. The protesters then placed a line of candles along the police tape.
According to ruling class media the police have no evidence that a crime was even committed. APD was “investigating” a call about someone using drugs in a car, however this report explained that the man using drugs was wearing a white shirt, and Ramos can be seen in a red shirt in the video of his murder.
The police do not exist to protect the community, they view the neighborhood as if they were an occupying army. It is critical to educate friends and neighbors about not calling the police, especially for non-violent crimes, because it is the presence of police and their hatred for the people that will make any situation worse. The APD murdered Ramos with his girlfriend in the car next to him, then arrested her for no reason. They are already squirming to cover their tracks.
Activists are calling for another demonstration tonight at 6pm at the apartment complex where Ramos was unjustly gunned down, located at 2800 Collins Creek near the intersection of E. Oltorf and Pleasant Valley.
This story is still developing and Tribune of the People will be offering updates in our regular Friday edition.