A police officer, his sheriff's deputy wife and their children moved to Yorba Linda a year and a half ago with dreams of loving life in "The Land of Gracious Living."
But the family left town, crossing the county line for a new place to call home, nearby Corona. Can anyone guess what drove them out? Here's a hint: the OC Human Relations Commission knows the answer.
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The answer is: the family is African American. The Los Angeles County sheriff's deputy shared her family's sad story with Rusty Kennedy of OC Human Relations, after discovering Orange County actually tracks hate crimes. She decided she must "share our story."
Kennedy is doing some sharing himself. He details the hell the family went through in Yorba Linda in a letter to "Friends of the Commission" that follows. After that is the letter a heartbroken commission sent to the family, whose name was withheld to protect their identity.
One hopes the family finds much more gracious living in Corona.
Dear Friends of the Commission
It is with heavy heart I share a story related to me by an LA County Deputy Sheriff about her family's experience in Yorba Linda over the last year and a half. NOT your happy thanksgiving story.
This African American family headed by an Inglewood Police Officer married to an LA County Deputy Sheriff and their children moved to Yorba Linda in search of the good life. What they found was quite different.
Shortly after arriving in May 2011 they were awakened in the middle of the night as rocks shattered the windows of their house.
Then they found that the 8 tires on their two cars had all been slashed.
Their 6 year old son related a story of classmates at Travis Ranch school who said he couldn't play with them because he was Black, and one kid told the others that they could not talk to him because he was Black.
Their young adult son shared that as he rode on his bicycle to work at the Home Depot he had repeatedly been yelled at by passing cars that called him N----r.
And finally on Oct 6, 2012 they were targets of acid pellets shot into their garage door that dripped down on their car ruining the paint and window.
They had reached the tipping point. They decided that they just could not live in a community where they were treated like this. They needed a more welcoming community where there were more diverse residents, where a Black family would not be such a rarity.
On 10/19/12 this family of public servants, moved to Corona in search of a safe and welcoming community.
Just before they left, they called OC Human Relations Commission. Having read that the Commission documented hate crimes, this mom, decided that she must "share our story with someone before we moved".
The OC Human Relations Commission adopted the [following] letter (on a copy without the name to preserve their privacy) to send to this family, and pledges to reach out to the African American community of Orange County this year to hear their stories and share their experience with the whole county.
OC Human Relations
1300 S. Grand, Bldg B
Santa Ana, CA 92705
As we wonder if Yorba Linda has not time tripped back to 1963--or the moment during the Richard Nixon presidency when the town's greatest attraction said shit like, "We're going to [place] more of those little Negro bastards on the welfare rolls at $2,400 a family. . . . I have the greatest affection for them, but I know they're not going to make it for 500 years"--we present on the next page the letter to the family Kennedy referenced that was signed by commission chairwoman Carol Turpen:
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Yorba Lindans should be ashamed.