Local activist fights on in civil rights case

By Bruce Boyer

 

Editor’s note:  After a long dispute about the allowability of vehicle advertising signs, where he repeatedly baited authorities with test cases (not just in Simi Valley, but some LA County cities), had repeated citations, confiscations, he was arrested without notice, jailed and charged with what he says are 10 criminal offenses. The local authorities don’t see this as civil rights case, but a violation of the law. The Free Speech Parade referenced is pictured on its Facebook Page. Boyer says that he is entitled to go directly to a federal court with a civil rights case and that the laws in question are unconstitutional. What say you?

Displays like this earned local civil rights activist Bruce Boyer arrest jail and charges and convictions for multiple crimes. Photo: Bruce Boyer

Documents

Charges/arrest warrant: Simi Valley PD Boyer

Notice of non-consent: Simi Valley Notice of non-consent

Regulations: Applicable Regs- Boyer case

 

Background

Simi Valley politicians had violated State Law(CVC 21)  for years in their prohibitions as to the parking of trailers and motor homes. In 2016, Boyer decided to take them to task and parked his Lone Star advertising trailers in Simi Valley to force the City into Court over their illegal parking restrictions. The City decided to double down on their actions. They impounded all eight advertising trailers including one that flew only an American flag, parked in front of the SV Police Station. They did so claiming everything from alleged parking over 72 hrs to a ‘Permission to park in a public parking lot is revoked”.

No vehicle owner of an impounded vehicle can receive an actual court hearing in CA, the law allows the PDs to decide if they are ‘reasonable”. 100,000 CA vehicles are seized every year and vehicle owners’ only option is to pay the tow fees. Boyer will be challenging that in Court as Simi Valley demonstrated the highest level of abuse. As the tows failed to dissuade Boyer from his campaign, the City decided to go even further and adopt State Laws (CVC22652 (v) & 21100 (m) & CVC 395.5. ), that allow a City to ban all advertising/messages on all vehicles, trailers, bicycles and any ‘device’ in all public areas of the City, at all times. Boyer and his company were the target of this State Legislation in 2011. Boyer has had his attorney challenge this law as a violation of our Freedom of Speech in Court ever since. The Courts held that it is a ‘reasonable restriction’. Simi Valley is one of a number of CA Cities ( L.A. Santa Clarita, Loma Linda, Calabasas and others) which have adopted this law. The law allows for both seizure of vehicles and criminal penalties.

Scene of the crime, with evidence on display

Boyer has his attorney, George Wallace of Pasadena,  working up yet another challenge to the anti-free speech laws, which Simi Valley volunteered to help show the abuses in the law, by so abusing free speech and vehicle seizures. To protest Simi Valley’s adoption of the law, Boyer organized a Free Speech Parade whereby citizens were invited to bring ‘displays’ to the Police Station so that the SVPD could inform them as to whether such ‘displays’ would be illegal and criminal violations, IF they were actually ‘displayed” for that purpose. The response from the SVPD over the three weeks of the parade in 2016 was to have all fifty plus displays seized as soon as displayed  then destroyed by the PD. The City decided that to insure Boyer’s subjugation they filed a warrant for his arrest. Rather than claiming the Free Speech displays were the alleged ‘Mobile-Bill Boards”, they claimed that the displays were the criminal “dumping of solid waste”; ten criminal counts!

He was arrested and jailed in April 2017. Rather than argue or accept as to our Freedom of Speech, the City will criminally prosecute. The second phase of the Free Speech Parade was launched in March of 2017 focused solely on bicycles. The City had all bicycles with signs parked anywhere in the City seized, no legal basis has yet been provided. The number of bicycles  being thirty four. The Free Speech Parade referenced is pictured on its Facebook Page. In the first criminal case the City has taken to trial in nearly twenty years, Boyer could well have been sentenced to 18 months in jail. Boyer states that as The City and The Court, Judge Ayers, refused to allow the production of exonerating  evidence, the production of subpoenaed witnesses, and over a dozen other documented abuses of his rights including ‘must convict’ jury instructions, Boyer agreed to plead “No contest to three counts”, no jail time.

Only three of the objects placed in the “Free Speech Parade” were in the criminal charges in the plea deal and the prosecutor/court wont say which ones. Evidence was all claimed to be destroyed. Photo: Bruce Boyer

 Boyer says that among his next steps is to distribute Fully Informed Jury Association information to all Ventura County jurors there at the Court house; take Simi Valley and Ventura County to Federal Court over the prosecutorial abuses; the City of Simi Valley over their illegal seizures, violations of Freedom of Speech  as well as the next Federal challenge to restore the right to display signs on one’s own vehicles bicycles and baby strollers, Freedom of Speech.. What say you?

 

Letter sent to The honorable Judge Patricia Murphy, Presiding Judge of the Ventura County Superior court,   July 4th 2017

I am writing to you over the handling of a criminal prosecution case against me in your Courthouse in May and June of 2017 case #2016043938. Rather than be railroaded and sent to jail I accepted, under duress, a plea agreement to which I would not display or place any object in the City of Simi Valley. If your response is that you need read no further as there is ” nothing you can do” or “that I need to consult  an attorney and ……”, then may I suggest that you not default to that and to keep reading. This letter addresses both the systemic denials of liberty and justice in Your Court with your need to remedy them and figure out how to do justice for me in my case.

I am grateful that I had the opportunity to be so afflicted and my liberties so abused by your system of injustice that it afforded me the opportunity to see the extreme injustice for what it is and that I was allowed to not be locked away in a dungeon so that I am afforded the opportunity to work to restore justice.

As to the particulars: Your Court allowed the City to file a warrant for my arrest with giving me notice as to any hearing on this and issued a warrant for my arrest w/o examining the substance of the allegations. The City knew full well how to contact me.  Having visited the Police Station on dozens of occasions, operated the Free Speech Parade that continued for weeks in front of City Hall, my repeated Council meeting appearances, letters to the Council, Police Dept.  City Attorney, City Clerk and City Manager. Your Court granted a warrant for my arrest. The City sat on it for two months. I was arrested as I came to the SVPD station, again, for yet another Kangaroo police conducted “vehicle impound  review” (they do like to seize my vehicles and bicycles, as to date they have seized 14 vehicles and 34 bicycles and never has there been any adjudication of any violation of any law) to instead be arrested.

Your Court set my bail at $5,000 when Your bail schedule has NO bail authorization for this offense. Therefore Your Court violated that law in setting that bail. Will Your Judge be charged with breaking the law? I laugh because we know that you would never allow accountability to happen. Nonetheless, I give you the opportunity and notice. Show me that there is accountability. By Your standards, bail is to be set based upon the likelihood of flight, the severity of the crime and the defendant’s criminal history. Your Court’s setting of this bail was both illegal and unreasonable. It is not reasonable to expect that a lifetime resident of LA/Ventura Counties, who is a local small business owner, who is a regular political activist in the City of Simi would NOT show up as ordered. Seriousness of the crime; can it get ANY lower? $5000 is NOT a reasonable amount of money. Only drug dealers and wealthy elites have $5000 in cash lying around. My Constitutional Right to reasonable bail means nothing in Your Court. Fortunately my son was able to withdraw funds from my business acct. and drive out to the Sheriff’s station and I had those funds, or I would have been incarcerated for weeks while Your Court allowed and facilitated a false prosecution. I can well understand why many arrestees who are not so fortunate accept plea deals for time served just to escape regardless of whether they are guilty or not.

Your Court refused to provide me with legal representation. The fact that I am gainfully employed does mean that I have the financial means to pay a private attorney $20,000 to $50,000 to take this case to trial and defend me in a case where no crime was even committed. Realistically, no one has that kind of money. You know that, yet you perpetuate it. I have enough sense that if I committed a crime I would hire an attorney to cut me a good plea deal regardless of whether I could afford it, or I would “quit my job” to get a public defender. Your Court offers those of us who are not indigent nothing to allow us to defend ourselves. Your Court sets up rules and procedures to inhibit us from defending ourselves. Telling us to ‘go to the law library’ is merely an answer to get us out of the way. Your Court sets up a system where people who are neither wealthy nor indigent have to become indigent in order to defend themselves. Our Right to legal representation should not come at the price that real working people cannot afford. If so it is no right whatsoever. There is no ‘self help’ for criminal defendants. We have nothing to aid us. The Public Defender’s office will not assist us in any way, yet the money  I pay in property and other taxes goes only to the prosecution of the citizen, none for my defense. Those in jail have even less. This is not justice, it is just a system.

I showed up every day in Ventura as ordered to await a trial date and lost considerable time off work (I work in San Fernando) as I awaited a trial date. The City attorney of course is paid with my tax dollars to travel to Ventura. It may be convenient for Public Defenders to show up repeatedly, but as a  private citizen, I would have been hammered with attorney fees by these delays. This prevents us from obtaining legal representation. Your Court violates our rights.  Of course, nothing can be heard for  my case until it gets assigned to a trial judge. More delays that the defendant must pay for. I heard as other cases were delayed because the VCSD would not bring the defendants over to the Courthouse because the VCSD had a problem in their jail. What of the rights of those to a speedy trial?

Once assigned, Your Judge Ayers allowed the City of Simi to maliciously prosecute me, alleging that our Free Speech Parade in front of the Simi Valley City Hall and police station was criminal. Your Court allowed the City to proceed with a criminal prosecution alleging that cardboard signs with stuffed animals, holding American flags and ‘We support our cops” signs attached to bicycles, lawn chairs, baby-strollers and other such items (which were all seized by the City within minutes or hours of their display, and held by the SVPD) were an “illegal disposal of solid waste”. Yes, the corrupt City politicians are so desperate to silence our Free Speech they went to those lengths of evil. Your Judge facilitated them and allowed the City to allege that the Free Speech parade was an “illegal disposal of solid waste” SVMC 6-3.09 (b).

Your Judge Ayers refused to address my motion that the allegations cannot be true as the allegations even if true and committed by myself do not constitute a criminal act. In Civil cases, a de mur.

Your Judge Ayers allowed this case to go to trial having had the City Attorney state that the “arresting officer” would not be available to testify. My right to confront my accuser was completely disregarded. Your arraignment judge had tried to hint to the City when told that the arresting officer would not appear, to dismiss the case, yet Your Judge Ayers violated my right to call the officer as my witness, to confront the witness and  allowed the City to continue without the only officer to testify as to the warrant for my arrest.

Your Judge Ayers refused to dismiss the case and refused to have my challenge to the arrest warrant heard.

Your Judge Ayers allowed the City to proceed when they admitted that they had destroyed ALL of the alleged “evidence”.

Your Judge Ayers refused to order the City to comply with my subpoenas as to the documents it possessed that showed that the City knew full well that ALL of the items were part of a Free Speech Parade and not in any way ‘trash’ or “discards”.  My right to have the prosecution provide exculpatory evidence in its possession was denied.

Your Judge Ayers continually allowed the City Attorney to object to my questioning of their one witness as a consequence the witness did not testify to the WHOLE truth.

Your Judge Ayers refused to require the prosecution to specify what was  specific ‘disposal of solid waste’ and in what manner, whether  the various stuffed animals, flags, cardboard signs, scooters were  “compostables’ or ‘recyclables’ or ‘ household appliances”.

Your Judge Ayers continually pulled me to the bench to chastise me for not following  “her procedures’ such as whether I was too close to the jury when questioning the officer and other ridiculousness. She was more concerned with her ‘etiquette’ than whether I could proceed with a proper defense to the best of my ability.

Your Judge Ayers refused to acknowledge a means rea criminal intent requirement as to a basis of guilt. She decided that IF the allegations were true, then therefore I MUST be guilty, that no criminal intent on my part was necessary for a conviction.

In probably the most egregious violation of my rights; Your Judge Ayers refused to order my subpoenaed witnesses to appear. I had subpoenaed over a dozen SVPD officers, the PMK from the City Public Works Dept who removed the alleged illegal items and City Attorney Eldridge who had my letters as to the Free Speech Parade as well as the former Chief of Police who had met with me as to the Free Speech Parade. The proofs of service were made available to the Court. I had managed to navigate the VCSD system for Criminal subpoenas, and It is completely inadequate to deal with the realities that YOUR Court impose upon it. The VCSD REQUIRES 3-5 days notice, yet Your Courts do not give us 3-5 days (add to that the VCSD is closed except for Mon & Tues for service in Simi Valley). As a result, my right to subpoena witnesses has completely denied me. No witnesses means I lose. I had to accept a plea deal for something that never happened.

Jury instructions: Your Judge Ayers wrote out Jury instructions that effectively denied me the Right to trial by Jury. The Jury was relegated to a rubber stamp committee. If we are to have justice this must be corrected for other cases. I cannot and  will not accept that you will allow our right to trial by jury to be circumvented.

When It became clear that I would not be allowed to be other than guilty, and facing the real likely hood of up to 18 months in the County Jail, Your Judge had to be “persuaded” by the City Attorney to allow me to agree to a plea deal that avoided jail time and he had to assure me, in her presence that she would choose to allow my sentence to be suspended, because of course whatever I agree to is NOT binding upon Your Judge. It was as though she was personally affronted that I did not get sent to jail.

Your judge Ayers actually discussed with the City Attorney why the City could not just pass a ‘content neutral’ law to ban these  ‘displays’. This protest was of course to protest that very law.

It is not possible that what I experienced and that the belief that we have a system of justice are both true. If there are consequences and accountability, then perhaps there is more justice than is apparent. If there is no accountability than likely it is far worse that what I saw. I would be more than happy to sit down with you and Judge Ayers, let her ‘explain it to you”. Will you hold her accountable, to respect our rights?

Please do not spin me the ‘this is how it’s done” and the “this is what the laws says your rights are” or such nonsense. I know what my rights are, they are clearly spelled out. I and the rest of the citizens know what is justice, and what is injustice. It is Your laws that are laws that are wrong, not our rights and justice.

I launched the Free Speech Parade in Simi Valley to protest because that City passed ordinance #1257 in 2016 to make the display of a sign on a vehicle, a bicycle or a lawn chair a crime. They criminalized our Free Speech. Rather than charge me with that crime, they went for the “disposal of waste” because they could have the full assistance of Your Court to do so.  While I could easily just walk away from this, after all, I spent 4 hrs in jail (my jailer was my son’s former youth pastor!) I lost what I did as to time. I don’t HAVE to go to Simi Valley. Or fight for free speech, liberty or justice, in Simi Valley, or anywhere else. However, I am a 5th generation American soldier. My family has known only how to fight for liberty, we know not how to run, nor quit. All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing. I set out to restore the  freedom of speech aspect of our liberty. In doing so I have seen how it is far more lost in many more ways than I knew. The extent of the injustice  in Your legal system is a great evil. For anyone to walk away from the ongoing injustice would be wrong.

I  know what course I must follow. This Patriot will work/fight/struggle/engage/recruit/enlist/draw attention to/protest and what have you to restore our liberty and justice for all. The Courthouse MUST be THE place where we must see liberty and justice restored. If Your Courts will not, then OUR Jurors can be the instruments of justice, they need merely to be Fully Informed of their proper role and what Your Courts do to Our justice to carry it out.

If I am not living in a free Country, what else matters here on earth? It was by God’s protection that I was spared the dungeon. I must recognize that and put my time otherwise lost to the pursuit of justice for all. Your choice and that of all citizens is to whether you will work with me to restore liberty and justice, against it, or ignore the evils and abuses of our rights  liberties and justice.

I look forward to meeting with you at your earliest convenience.

YOS,

Bruce Boyer

Chief Instigator, Sons of Liberty

(address redactedBruce@SonsoflibertyLA.com

 

Bruce Boyer is well known as a local civil rights advocate, active protester and litigator. He is the Chief Instigator of the SonsofLibertyLA. Since 2010 they have been a “boots on the ground” Civil Rights action group. The group gets out to take action to defend our Civil Rights as free men and women. They get out to shut down checkpoints, turn the tables on ‘gun-buy-backs’; speak out at City Council meeting; get the word out at public events and more. 


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One Response to Local activist fights on in civil rights case

  1. Bruce Boyer July 11, 2017 at 6:37 pm

    THANK YOU FOR PUTTINGTHIS UP. THE FIGHT FOR LIBERTY IS ONGOING. THIS IS JUST ONE CHAPTER IN MY BOOK. I HOPE THAT PEOPLE CAN GRASP THE ALL OUT ATTACK ON OUR LIBERTIES. THISE WHO DO UNDERSTAND THAT OUR RIGHT TO SIT AS JURORS IS THE MOST EFFECTIVE WEPON WE HAVE, WE NEED TO MAKE SURE ALL CITIZENS KNOW HOW TO USE IT. WHO WILL JOIN ME?

    Reply

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