FCC Agents, backed by armed US Marshals, raided Free Radio Santa Cruz on September 29, 2004.
At 8:20 AM on Wednesday, September 29, armed US Marshals and FCC Agents raided the house from which Free Radio Santa Cruz broadcasts. Agents entered with guns drawn, showing the warrant to a couple of residents but not serving the warrant to anyone at that time. All residents, some wearing only their bathrobes and PJ’s, were herded to the sidewalk in front of their house.
Free Radio Santa Cruz was airing Democracy Now! at 37 watts as the FCC Agents and US Marshals (we counted at least 16) worked to get into the studio. By this time FRSC 101.1 FM was airing a pre-programmed interview with Howard Zinn. This interview, in which Zinn read poems by Langston Hughes and Bob Dylan and cited Zora Neal Hurston’s comments against WW2, was in progress when the signal was taken off the air. Listeners of FRSC heard the sound of static for the first time ever due to governmental interference.
Agents videoed community members who lined the street and crowded onto the sidewalk in front of the house in support of the station. Residents were not allowed to bring cameras into their home, nor were they allowed entrance without first having their bags searched.
Freak Radio has been raided after almost 10 years of broadcasting for the Santa Cruz community and listeners around the world via online streaming. FRSC has received strong support from members of the community (audio mp3), including Representative Sam Farr, Mayor Scott Kennedy (audio mp3) and the Santa Cruz City Council.