VALLEJO — The East Bay Dragons, the primary all-Black bike membership to exist within the Bay Area, has filed a federal lawsuit towards Solano County alleging county worker concocted a purpose to cancel a deliberate membership event on the fairgrounds after listening to that one in all its members had associations with the Black Panthers.
The go well with, filed final June, claims that the Dragons deliberate a 60th anniversary event on the Solano County Fairgrounds in Vallejo that was to be attended by a minimum of three,800 folks and would have featured a formidable lineup of music and comedy. Instead, the event was canceled on the final minute, after the Dragons had spent 1000’s in charges and planning.
Now the membership is suing to recoup these funds, which incorporates money to pay for the deliberate listing of featured rappers, singers, and comic: Whodini, Too Short, Doug E Fresh, Richie Rich, Dru Down, Tony Tone Toni, and Mark Curry, in keeping with the civil grievance.
The go well with continues to be in its early phases. The county has not responded in court docket. The fairgrounds’ CFO, Mike Ioakimedes, stated he has not but reviewed the go well with along with his lawyer and declined to remark.
According to the lawsuit, the difficulty for the deliberate August 2019 event began when a county worker realized member of the Dragons owned It’s All Good Bakery in Oakland, situated at 5622 Martin Luther King Way, the Black Panthers’ first headquarters. The bakery’s web site says its founder, Kim Clark, is happy with that truth as a result of his household benefited from the Panthers’ free breakfast program as youngsters.
According to the go well with, all of this was an issue for the worker, who allegedly remarked that the Black Panthers have been “the greatest threat to the internal security of the country,” and began working to cancel the Dragons’ event.
As a results of this, the go well with alleges, fairgrounds employees invented the ruse that there was a reputable menace to the security of the event, “but there was no credible threat at all.”
“This insidious belief of EBD’s threat traveled all the way to Oakland and with the help of the Oakland Police Department, and at the conclusion of the 60th anniversary celebration, on September 2, 2019, the EBD were surrounded by Oakland Police Department officers due to racist motives as they were enjoying themselves at Level 13 in Oakland,” the civil grievance says.
The Dragons have been based within the 1950s as a automotive membership, however switched over to bikes in 1959. Their founder, Tobie Gene Levingston, remained president till his demise final 12 months.
In East Oakland, the biker membership is beloved, stated Councilman Larry Reid, who stated the group’s clubhouse in his district on International Boulevard has produced meals distribution on Thanksgivings and toy drives throughout Christmas.
“The East Bay Dragons are an incredible organization,” Reid stated. “They really interact with the young kids out here in East Oakland and with families.”
Reid stated the Dragons have held occasions on the Oakland Zoo and by no means confronted complaints besides in regards to the noise of their bikes.
“If you came out here and talked to folks, no one is going to say anything negative about the East Bay Dragons,” Reid stated. “They’d only talk about the good things they do and how they are positive role models for our children.”