Letter from Bob Fitch, Renowned Civil Rights Photographer, to Santa Cruz DA: Dismiss All Charges

From: Bob Fitch
Date: March 28, 2012
To: [email protected]
Cc: Sam Farr, Luis Alejo, Don Lane, Katherine Beiers, Tony Madrigal

Mr. Lee – regarding prosecution of Bradley Allen for documenting an Occupy event —

I have been a globally published photojournalist for 50 years, on some occasions on assignment from conventional media like LIFE, LOOK, POST, and many times on assignment for “alternative” media like MOTIVE, RAMPARTS, WIN, MALCRIADO, NATIONAL CATHOLIC REPORTER, YOUTH, and INDY MEDIA, etc.

Although my obvious editorial interests were peace, justice and labor issues, and was often labeled “alternative”, my status as “press” was always respected, never questioned!!

Bradley, for a decade-plus, has been a committed and steady photojournalist who routinely documented for INDY MEDIA which is as “alternative” as DEMOCRACY NOW. Would you deny “press” identity, privileges and protections to Juan Gonzales or Amy Goodman? Of course not!

It is an injustice, counter to similar cases, unconstitutional and a waste of taxpayer funds to interfere with, arrest and prosecute journalist Bradley for documenting an Occupy movement event.

Dismiss all charges.

Bob Fitch
6 Pajaro Vista Ct.
Watsonville, CA 95076

cc: Sam Farr, Luis Alejo, Don Lane, Katherine Beiers, Tony Madrigal

Bob Fitch Photo

At http://www.bobfitchphoto.com click on “Photo Archives” & “Biography” links.

Grange 523 Calendar: http://www.bobfitchphoto.com/grangecal

Photo of Bob Fitch by Bradley on June 23, 2006 at the Cabrillo College Center in Watsonville, California after a presentation by David Bacon, a photographer, author, and radio host with a background in labor organizing.

For more information on Bob Fitch, please read the biography on his website, and an interview by Rachel Signer published on March 21, 2012 at Waging Nonviolence.

On the civil rights trail with Bob Fitch

Like many others who documented the civil rights era, Bob Fitch, now 72, was a white man covering a black people’s movement. But unlike many mainstream-media reporters, in his mind this was not just another job. Fitch was a principal photojournalist for the African-American press. He had been hired by Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Southern Christian Leadership Conference to provide coverage for outlets across the country who could not risk sending one of their own reporters because the risks for black journalists were too high.