Memorial Day Weekend 2017, starts the beginning of the Summer season for some and for Law Enforcement it is just another opportunity to conduct DUI checkpoints under the guise of traffic safety. On Friday, May 26, 2017 journalist Daniel Saulmon, or as he’s better known as (Tom Zebra) from his YouTube channel, was documenting along with CatMan of the ONUS News Service a DUI checkpoint under control and supervision of the city of Los Angeles Police Department (Pacific Division).
The checkpoint was set up in the City of Marina del Rey, at the intersection of W. Washington Blvd. and Yale Avenue and it ran from 8 PM to 1 AM on Saturday morning. Video starts with Daniel Saulmon interacting with a member the LAPD, while standing off the sidewalk, he is being told” that he has to move because he is in their (LAPD) workspace.” All the while a local news team from ABC 7 News, can be seen conducting interviews with police officers, standing in the roadway, standing in the checkpoint area, interviewing drivers in the checkpoint area, and instead of allowing independent journalist the same access, the representatives of the LAPD, block, threatened to arrest, intimidate, coerce and eventually arrest Daniel Saulmon for interference with law enforcement activities, aka “contempt of cop”.
Though some will say that Daniel Saulmon should, simply move along, and complied with the officer’s request, and none of this would have happen. Yet, history shows that it would’ve made no difference where Daniel Saulmon was standing or not standing, the LAPD treats citizen and independent journalists in a manner that conflicts with their official policy and procedure. Why? It’s obvious lack of accountability.
This checkpoint and Daniel’s arrest were supervised by LAPD Sgt. Mark Guardardo, he was also the designated spokesperson (PIO) for this operation, he could have changed the outcome, but choose not to.
At the time of publishing, I requested a media statement from the Los Angeles Police Department, PIO (Public Information Officer/ Media Relations) ,I will provide update to the story as more information becomes available.