We, the undersigned, urge the Mayor and Richmond City Councilmembers to vote NO on the appointment of Catherine Montalbo to Richmond's Citizen/Community Police Review Commission.
As the public social media posts included below show, Catherine Montalbo would be an unacceptable addition to any board or commission, but especially the CPRC. She has demonstrated:
* Her intention to treat undocumented residents of Richmond, who she insists on calling "illegal immigrants," in a punitive and unfair manner.
* Her belief that the undocumented residents of Richmond should not feel entitled to the protections offered by the CPRC.
* A willingness to spread misinformation to incite people to withdraw support of the undocumented residents of Richmond, such as when she claimed that ICE raids in the area had been focused on rounding up criminals.
* A lack of understanding about the history and continuing impacts of anti-black racism in the US, especially as it relates to policing and public safety. Her sharing photos on Facebook and Nextdoor of an African American woman she suspected of criminal activity is a form of vigilantism that put black lives in danger.
* A callousness towards those who express concerns about the impacts of racism, gentrification, and mass incarceration on local residents.
Given her clearly stated positions, there is ample reason to believe that Catherine Montalbo would not be able to fulfill the requirements of the position she is seeking. She cannot be trusted to be a fair investigator of cases involving undocumented or African-American residents, nor will she be able to evaluate policies and procedures in an unbiased way. Her participation will in no way will contribute to positive police-community relations with these groups or any other Richmonder who believes in fair treatment for all.
We urge the Mayor and Richmond CIty Councilmembers to vote NO on her appointment to the CPRC.