ANAHEIM (CBS) — The group “Anonymous” is launching an attack on the embattled Anaheim Police Department following the arrest of 24 protesters during a near-riot prompted by two deadly officer-involved shootings.
In a YouTube video posted Tuesday, the politically motivated “hacktivist” group declares that “Operation Anaheim” is engaged.
“Citizens of the world, we are Anonymous. The purpose of this video is clear; we want to inform the citizens of the world that the United States is setting the flames of revolution,” an electronically modified voice says during the 1:18 video, which features the group’s signature imagery of Guy Fawkes.
“In Anaheim, police shot protesters and bystanders including kids who did nothing wrong. Anonymous are calling yet again to the citizens of the United States to rise up in unison and defeat this government, which values no lives, nor freedom. Do it for the safety of your families, your homes, and your future generations. The fate of America is in your hands. Do you wish to be oppressed further; or do you wish to obtain freedom and peace? The choice is yours. Let’s beat the drums of war. Operation Anaheim engaged. We are Anonymous. We are legion. We do not forgive. We do not forget. Expect us.”
Tuesday’s scuffle, as well as the video, were prompted by two controversial shootings that took place over the weekend in Anaheim.
On Saturday, Manuel Diaz, who police described as a documented gang member from Santa Ana, was approached by officers around 4 p.m. in the 600 block of North Anna Drive. Police said Diaz, 25, and his two companions ran off, but an officer shot him when he reportedly threw an unidentified object. However, no weapons were found at the scene. Diaz died at a hospital several hours later.
Diaz’s family has filed a $50 million legal claim and accompanying suit against the city, alleging he was first shot in the back, then in the head.
On Sunday, Anaheim police fatally shot 21-year-old Joel Mathew Acevedo at the end of a stolen-vehicle pursuit. Acevedo, an alleged gang member, reportedly fired at officers before he was fatally shot.
Anaheim Mayor Tom Tait said Monday he was “very, very concerned with what occurred in our city on Saturday night.”
Tait asked the state Attorney General’s Office and the U.S. Attorney’s Office to help investigate the shooting.