Remembering Antonio Guzman Lopez: Family of SJ State Police Shooting Death Holds Birthday Celebration

On November 15, 2014, Antonio Guzman Lopez's family gathered to celebrate what would have been his 39th birthday. In February of this year, Antonio was shot and killed by San Jose State Police officers Mike Santos and Frits Van Der Hoek. Antonio left behind his partner Laurie, and his children -- 5 year old Josiah and daughter Angelique. Almost 7 months later, the Santa Clara County District Attorney has yet to complete their investigation as to whether the shooting was justified. In the meantime, his family -- through the leadership of Laurie Valdez -- launched the Justice for Josiah campaign to seek accountability for their loved one's death. A humble man who loved his children above everything, Antonio was remembered last Saturday among family, community, and supporters who pledged to support Antonio's family through the long road ahead.

Josiah and Laurie watch balloons released to the sky that contained messages of love for Antonio. 

Josiah blows out the candles for what would have been his dad's 39th birthday.

5 year old Josiah listens to speakers at St. Paul's Methodist Church. 

The tree on 8th and San Salvador where Antonio Guzman Lopez was killed has become an altar for Josiah's father.

Laurie created 'Pledge Cards' that she asked community members to sign -- promising to speak against injustice in all its forms.

Through the heartbreak of losing his dad at such a young age, Josiah's mom Laurie has been his rock.  She has been an outspoken advocate, not just for Antonio but for lives lost to police violence.

8th and San Salvador Streets -- where Antonio Guzman Lopez was killed. Laurie says, "Antonio is buried in Mexico, and this is the only place I can take my children to mourn the death of their father."

About Charisse Domingo

 

Charisse Domingo is a photojournalist with Silicon Valley De-Bug, and co-founder of the Albert Cobarrubias Justice Project. Domingo is also the co-founder of the Darkroom at Debug, a community for film photographers.

This article is part of the categories: Community  / Law & Justice  / Photo  / Politics  / Protect Your People: Running De-Bug Coverage on the Movement to End Police Violence, Including the Killings of Mike Brown and Erick Garner  / R.I.P  / San Jose//South Bay 
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