NEXT COURT DATE –
NICHOLAS WEBER ON TRIAL
TIME TBA, JULY 13, 2023
14400 Erwin Street Mall, Van Nuys, CA, 91301
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April 17 Pre-Trial Hearing Results:
Judge fails to allow hate crimes charge.
Arraignment set for May 1
On April 17, members of Neighborhood Safety Companions once again joined with over 100 supporters of the Roque family to rally outside the Van Nuys courthouse and to pack the courtroom to hear judge Neetu Badhan-Smith deliver a ruling following review of evidence presented across three previous preliminary hearings.
Despite the overwhelming video evidence of the assailant Nicholas Weber saying, “You so Asian….I going to kill all of you” in a racist, mocking fake “Asian”accent, prior to initiating violence, the court ruled that because Weber also attacked a non-Asian who was attempting to intervene, that this meant there was insufficient evidence to establish racist bias. While the judge found probable cause for the felony assault charge and bodily injury caused by the attacks, the hate crime enhancement was dropped from the charges, which will be formally read at an arraignment hearing on May 1, 2020.
With the inherently discriminatory nature of the legal system once again being demonstrated, supporters expressed great outrage afterwards, chanting outside the courthouse, “Get it right the first time, that was a HATE CRIME!” Everyone knows that the Roques were attacked because they were ASIAN.
We will continue to pressure the courts and to support the Roque’s quest for justice into the next phase of this campaign, but have no plans on ending the longer term quest to win a justice system that can provide true justice to victims of hate crimes. Clearly there is a profound problem when the majority of hate crimes reported nationally are not being prosecuted as such: https://abcnews.go.com/US/hate-crimes-hard-prosecute/story
THURSDAY, APRIL 6 UPDATE – Three Consecutive Days of Preliminary Hearings
Patricia Roque and both of her parents, Nerissa and Gabriel, who survived physical violence initiated by Nicholas Weber in May 2022, testified on the witness stand across three days of examination, cross-examination and re-direct.
Once again, sometimes on less than a 16-hour turnaround, increasingly broad support came from as far as Sacramento and Riverside to rally outside of the Van Nuys Courthouse West and to pack the courtroom for three days in a row to deliver support to the Roque family for their courage in standing up on behalf of all victims of racist and hateful violence.
Several people have now seen for themselves, in person, how the U.S. legal system perpetuates and defends White Supremacist violence. Supporters have noted that the continued growth of a movement to bring attention to this case has been a “win” in and of itself: Solidarity against anti-Asian violence has been growing nationally and internationally, even as the number of racist attacks against Asian Americans continues to rise.
Videos taken by Patricia Roque at the scene of the crime and post-incident body camera interview footage from the very late-arriving Los Angeles Police Department were shown in court.
The defense attorney representing assailant Nicholas Weber made a motion to dismiss or to reduce the charges to misdemeanor and argued to drop the hate crime allegation.
After three consecutive days of pre-trial hearings, both sides rested. No more witnesses were called to the stand and the judge presiding made each side make an argument before going into recess.
Justice Neetu S. Badhan Smith, the judge presiding over the hearings, will be reviewing all evidence as submitted and the preliminary hearing process will continue after the court lunch break on Tuesday, April 17. Once again, NSC and other supporters will be mobilizing for that court date to stand with the Roques and pack the courtroom!
Members of the Roque family had to take several days of leave without pay from their jobs this week to attend the hearings. They will have to do the same for future court appearances. Please consider making a small donation to help them with their expenses so the do not have to bear the financial burden of this fight alone HERE and HERE!
MONDAY, MARCH 6 UPDATE FROM THE VAN NUYS COURTHOUSE:
“People Power” Wins a Step Towards Justice!
Over 100 people and representatives from 20 community and student organizations showed up to the Van Nuys Courthouse West to support the Roque family in their heroic quest to win justice for all Asian Americans and victims of hate crimes violence. This was the NINTH court appearance that the Roque family has had to take leave without pay off from their jobs to attend. Supporters were there to pressure the court system to put an END TO FURTHER DELAYS in court proceedings. People packed the courtroom, with only half of the supporters being able to enter the courtroom for lack of seating capacity.
The judge could not help but notice the large support in attendance and made good on previous statements to the defense (attacker Nicholas Weber’s public defender attorney) that sufficient time had been granted for them to review evidence and that proceedings would advance to a Pre-Trial Hearing on Tuesday, April 4, 2023. This represents a victory in the longer battle to win legal justice for the Roques!
At the April 4 pre-trial hearing, the judge will hear testimony and review existing evidence in order to make a determination as to whether or not to bring the perpetrator and initiator of the violence, Nicholas Weber, to trial. Members of the Roque family are expected to testify. Let’s all mobilize for the April 4 date to show our support! We must continue to build public support and hold the system accountable.
How can you support the Roque Family?
Spread the word! Join a campaign committee, we can use whatever time and skills you have to bring to this fight! Get friends and family to donate funds to offset the family’s financial burden and help with expenses to run the campaign (printing of flyers, etc).
Bookmark and share the Justice4Roques.com website and get involved in this important campaign!
Watch and share videos: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLCGSFGmB8D9jxZ22a-7vaYLevZ33TLkUM
WEDS., JANUARY 11 UPDATE FROM THE VAN NUYS COURTHOUSE:
As of today, from the Van Nuys Courthouse, the January 24 preliminary hearing has been cancelled.
The new date-setting hearing is on Monday, March 6. Then, the preliminary hearing, where the judge will hear and consider whether sufficient evidence exists to warrant a trial, should be within 30 days afterwards, most likely sometime in April. Please continue helping to spread the word about his case and building support for this important fight for justice.
Video update via @justiceforroques on Instagram:
Contact the Los Angeles District Attorney to Demand Justice!
NSC is working in coalition with Filipino Migrant Center, NAFCON of Southern CA, Migrante of Los Angeles, Anakbayan of Southern CA, Gabriela Los Angeles, Nikkei Progressives, AWA SoCal, and others to keep white supremacist Nicholas Weber off of the streets and to pressure District Attorney George Gascón and his office to do more than just making verbal promises.
Visit the Filipino Migrant Center support page to find out how to take action. In particular, help us get more organizations to sign on to the letter to District Attorney Gascón to pursue a full investigation.
Donate to help the family (e.g. they are having to take unpaid leave to show up for court dates). Sign-up as a supporter to be put on an email list to receive updates about the campaign. Spread the word about this case, which has implications for all Asian Americans being targeted for violence.
Join Neighborhood Safety Companions’ Justice for Roques as a volunteer. Take this opportunity to work to fight against anti-Asian violence.
Recent incident in San Ramon, CA, confirms the importance of winning justice for the Roques:
Community gathers in support of the Roque family over the holidays and raise over $1000!
See photos are read about the community celebration event here: https://safetywalks.org/j4r-community-celebration/
October 12th Update:
Supporters from various organzations once again rallied behind the Roque family on October 12 at the Van Nuys County Courthouse. This was the final “pre-hearing hearing.” Deputy District Attorney Paul C. Kim and the courts are giving the Public Defender representing Nicholas Weber time to review evidence. The Roque family, despite attempts by the Los Angeles Police Department to discourage them from pursuing criminal charges, has reconfirmed their commitment to seeking the justice they deserve and will push forward on behalf of all Asian Americans to have the case go to trial versus plea bargaining. Their case is strong, so this becomes a test for the U.S. legal system, but the outcome will depend largely upon continued community support, both moral and financial.
The commencement of the preliminary hearing to determine if there exists enough evidence to bring assailant Weber to trial will occur on January 24, 2023. Weber is being charged with two counts of felony battery, both with hate crimes enhancements. A protective order has been issued to limit the legal movement of Weber around the vicinity of the family’s residence in the event that Weber gets released ahead of trial.
Please continue to support NSC’s efforts to educate the public about the importance of this case and help us to build more grassroots support for the Roque family.
September 30th Update:
The hearing moved forward, with a victory: the DA is seeking felony battery with a hate crime enhancement. The pressure is working.
The Roques have requested financial assistance from the Philippine Consulate as they have been having to take leave without pay from their jobs to attend court hearings and related events.
The Consulate took a neutral position, along the lines of “we support whatever decision is rendered,” but also assigned a staffer, Consul Maynard Maleon, to attend the hearing on Sept. 30th.
After the brief hearing, which ended in a request to delay the next meeting until Thursday, October 13, #JusticeForRoques activists raised concerns with the Consul.
August 19 Update:
For over a month, the Roque family and community had been awaiting the August 19 court hearing. Following a pre-rally which included statements by various organizations, the family and supporters wearing new “Support the Roques” t-shirts packed the courtroom. The accused attacker, Nicholas Weber had not met bail and was present. All were perplexed when the only thing that transpired was reaching agreement on a new court date, September 30. The explanation was that the Public Defender’s office needed time to review the evidence held by the D.A.’s office. The Roque family questioned why it was taking so long to get them materials that they have had for over a month. Attorney Kim replied that they are working with LAPD to have the video from the incident “enhanced.”
THE NEXT COURT DATE IS SET FOR FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 30. The #JusticeForRoques campaign will use this time to continue outreach and building support for this important fight.
July 11 UPDATES:
On Monday, July 11, at 7:00 AM a community press conference was held at Van Nuys Courthouse West (14400 Erwin St, Van Nuys, CA 91401), just ahead of an arraignment hearing, with Weber present.
Nicholas Weber has been charged with battery and a hate crime in relation to the May 13, 2022 attack on the Roque family in North Hollywood, CA.
With dozens of supporters in attendance, Weber was arraigned on July 11, 2022. To the relief of the family, the suspect was NOT released on his “own recognizance.” The Deputy District Attorney (DDA) attorney, Paul C. Kim, submitted a request for a court-ordered 5-block protective, restricted area around the Roque family residence, to be in force in the event that Weber meets the $153,000 bail. In the event Weber meets bail, he will not have legal access to this area. The judge signed off on the restricted area order. After the arraignment, DDA attorney Kim stated that he will be pursuing Felony Battery charges.
The next court date for the Weber hate crime assault on the Roque family is set for AUGUST 19.
For Asian Americans and the still-growing trend of racist violence they face, this case has obvious implications: Will the criminal justice and legal system, from the Los Angeles Police Department, who failed to arrive on scene in timely fashion and released Weber on the night of the attack, to the County Sheriff Department to the District Attorney office and the Judicial system deliver justice and protection to Asian peoples facing threat of violence from white supremacists like Nicholas Weber and others?
Help us monitor the custody status of this violent assailant. We must support the safety of the family in the event of his meeting bail and being released from jail.
LA County Sheriff Inmate Locator:
ENTER: Last Name: Weber; First Name: Nicholas; Date of Birth: 11/06/1990
See “Booking Number” 6402918,
Find case information here:
Case No. LA097021 (Roque Family Case)
Please consider supporting the Roque family with a donation (family members have been taking unpaid leave from their jobs to attend court hearings). They need follow-up medical and psychological trauma support as well:
DONATE to Support the Family and this campaign!
Roque family in the media:
Neighborhood Safety Companions on YouTube: Justice for Roques Playlist