49 entries

Articles by Jean Melesaine

The Time Saved Documentary Series: The Lisa Coulter Story

On December 10th, De-Bug/ACJP premiered a new documentary series chronicling the stories of families and public defenders who are working to turn "time served" into "time saved" at a launch party in San Jose, CA. The series, which will unfold with stories from across the country, captures in moment footage along the family's journey. This episode features Lisa Coulter, who had done 18 years of a life sentence and was potentially eligible for release at the time of our recording. Click here for more on Time Saved or the Albert Cobarrubias Justice Project.

Exodus From "The Jungle": Photo Chronicle of the Closing Days of the Nation's Largest Homeless Encampment

For decades, a creekbed in East San Jose has become a homeless encampment for hundreds of San Jose residents who've lost homes, jobs, families and have no place else to go. But today, "The Jungle," what it's mostly known as, has been shutdown by the City of San Jose. As police supervised, bulldozers wiped the area clean and the homes people made for themselves are now gone. Photographer Jean Melesaine went to meet with the people the night before forced removal, and photographer Charisse Domingo went to meet residents in the morning of its shutdown while people scrambled to see what to do next. At 6am, residents were woken with flashlights, police, and clean-up crews in hazmat suits. These are the photos of a community in Silicon Valley, one of the richest regions in the world, who are now searching for a new home. 

VIDEO: St.Louis County Residents Describe Political Corruption Just Weeks Before Michael Brown Killing

As communities across the country express outrage over the grand jury decision not to indict Darrell Wilson for the killing of Michael Brown, another relevant case from the area is proceeding to trial. Sylvester Caldwell, the Mayor of Pine Lawn, a neighboring town to Ferguson has been indicted on federal charges of extortion. The following is a video from Pine Lawn and Ferguson residents describing the political corruption in these small municipalities that allowed for the racially targeted police violence to fester. The footage was captured when De-Bug producers were in the Ferguson area just two weeks before the shooting death of Michael Brown. For more context regarding wrongful arrests in North St.Louis County, please read the report released by our friends at the ArchCity Defenders.

Photo Essay: From Oakland To Ferguson, People Hit The Streets For Mike Brown

Last night a grand jury in St. Louis came back with a verdict of not indicting Officer Darren Wilson who shot and murdered unarmed Mike Brown. Familiar feelings for Oakland arised, in the similar case of Oscar Grant who was also a young unarmed black man shot by a police officer.

The Bay Area Goes Orange and Black

If you didn't feel the city of San Francisco go quiet for a couple seconds during the evening of last Wednesday, you probably weren't watching the San Francisco Giants in the last game of the World Series. Literally 5 minutes after, this was the reaction from the neighborhood.

Why I Feel Unsafe With Columbus In San Jose

Spent this morning in a beautiful sunrise ceremony on Alcatraz celebrating the Ohlone Natives of this Bay Area land and the indigenous people across the world.

PHOTOS AND VIDEO: Breaking Bread In Puerto Rico

I had a chance to travel to Puerto Rico recently with my "boo thang" for a week. Anytime I travel anywhere, I'm looking for connections to my homeland, an island on the other side of the ocean. If there's a chance to break bread and talk story with the local native families, then it beats out any "tourist'y" spot in my book any day.

3 Words: "Do Or Die" -- A Jean Melesaine Photo Essay

We traveled to a small city in St. Louis to do a video to stop a young man from being executed. When asked about his life he said, "You grow into the shape of the container you were raised in." To tell his story, we needed to tell the story of the city and era he grew up in. The city was war-torn from what many called a "storm"; a plague of violence, poverty, drugs, and incarceration. The height of that war was the 90's. We asked the community members who survived to describe their city during that period. The first person we asked, while showing his bullet wounds said, "Do Or Die".

Native Hawaiian Pacific Islanders: "A Community of Contrasts" #IAMBEYOND

The month of May is Asian Pacific Islander month, in a new report titled "A Community of Contrasts" the report shows that Pacific Islanders have some of the highest rates of poverty, incarceration and low rates of higher education. 

An Open Letter, Apology To CNN Reporter Jeanne Moos: Pacific Peoples Don't "Decorate Bums" Or "Rub Noses" For Fun

Written in response to CNN journalist Jeanne Moos segment on Prince Williams family's visit to Aotearoa (New Zealand) and the Maori welcoming ceremony.
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