Protestors Demand Firing of Miami Beach Cop Who Tased Israel "Reefa" Hernandez

Categories: News

Reefa_mural_cropped.jpg
Months after the death of local teenage artist Israel "Reefa" Hernandez, friends and supporters are demanding justice. On Tuesday morning a group of protestors targeted Miami Beach police chief Ray Martinez and demanded that officer Jorge Mercado, the man who used the Taser that killed Hernandez, be fired.

See also: Israel Hernandez: Tasered to Death

The group first attended a breakfast meeting at David's Cafe where Martinez was delivering a speech and then took their protest to Miami Beach police headquarters.

"If Ray Martinez wants to leave office with any shred of honor then he should fire Jorge Mercado, who is unfit for service and a danger to society." said Zoe Hughes, a friend of Israel "Reefa" Hernandez, in a statement sent out the Justice for Israel "Reefa" Hernandez Committee.

Eight months ago, Officer Mercado and a group of other officers chased down 18-year-old Hernandez after they spotted the teen leaving a small graffiti mark on an abandoned McDonald's in mid-Beach. After being unable to catch Hernandez, Marcado deployed a Taser. Hernandez died moments later. His death was later attributed to the use of the Taser.

Mercado is on leave while the Florida Department of Law Enforcement conducts an independent review of his actions. Mercado has previously been accused of inappropriately beating and using a Taser on Iraq war veterans.

A Change.org petition demanding that State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle charge Mercado for his actions has already received nearly 6,000 signatures.

Chief Hernandez, meanwhile, is retiring soon and will likely leave office before the investigations into Reefa's death and Mercado's actions are complete.

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27 comments
RopaBasura
RopaBasura

We still wait for the toxicology report - the one that's going to say there was at least one substance - cocaine, meth or prescription medication that caused the heart failure when the tazer was used/  tazers do not kill people unless they're coked up - This has been established in many legal cases in many states.


Enough of the emotional and subjective reporting...

Lourdes Diaz
Lourdes Diaz

I'm glad so many on this thread are so perfect. This was a kid who did a stupid thing. We've all done stupid things. Thankfully, we didn't die because of it. A taser isn't supposed to kill you much less for painting on a wall. At the every least, the police department should be making sure that this tragedy doesnt happen again. And for the ridiculously ignorant - yes, graffiti art IS art.

Karolina Sucre
Karolina Sucre

The people who commented on this thread are heartless pieces of crap. Really? He deserved to die because he graffiti'd someone's wall?

whateveryousay
whateveryousay topcommenter

Don't use drugs, don't vandalize property, don't run from the police, don't resist the police.

Bummer.

Gabriel A. Valenzuela
Gabriel A. Valenzuela

Why do people keep calling this murder? If they really wanted to kill him they would of shot him. DUH!!!!! wow.

DRAKEMALLARD.0
DRAKEMALLARD.0 topcommenter

Again with the Israel Hernandez shit?  He was engaged in defacing someone's property, and knew it, and ran.His friends explained that they were using drugs together before they went out to vandalize.Teenager painting on walls is grounds for shots fired and or electrocution..this my friends is why we rate last in education. Just plain dumb. This is not art it is Criminal Damage to property and this little criminal decided to fight the law and as the song goes the law won. People are cheering for this persons deviant behavior. Our society is circling the drain of it's own destruction. It's called vandalism. Then fleeing and alluding. If you want to express yourself do it on a canvas or your mothers house. So let me get this straight, if the graffiti kid complied, didn't run away, and listed to the police officers request to stop, he would be alive today. Sounds to me if you comply, do as the police say, take the arrest and possibly fight your charges in court, you will more than likely come out of this situation without being tased

HarryTheHandyman
HarryTheHandyman topcommenter

"... using a Taser on Iraq war veterans."


Veterans with an S?  Wow.  That's crazy that he tasered multiple veterans.


Oh wait, Kyle article.  Turns out it was just one guy.  Carry on.

George I'doccupyThat Owen
George I'doccupyThat Owen

If kids had the proper outlet to express themselves you wouldn't have this problem. Cities need more legal walls up for artists. This can't stand it ban it attitude is just wrong. saying this kid deserved to get tased is beyond wrong as well. It was a gross over use of force on a child. Artists pay taxes just like everyone else except there is another tax they pay which is social rejection from what is considered the "mainstream". repressing creative types forces them to create in the shadows because what they do is considered a crime. Imagine if basketball were illegal. What would people do? They would break into warehouses and make courts, do it where the police don't go, play under bridges or whatever. Some officers would catch kids playing basketball and let them go because they know there's no harm in it. not saying graffiti is like basketball but skateboarding is. Just so happens that skateboarding and graffiti are tied together because people who skate think differently. the whole world is your skatepark much like the whole world is your canvas. The only boundaries set up in these areas are the ones you create yourself.

Joseph Mazon
Joseph Mazon

Graffiti is not grounds for murder, and if we all don't know by now that Miami Beach Police Department is the LAUGHINGSTOCK of this country? Second perhaps only to LAPD? we've been living on the moon for the last 20 years, I mean really folks? Where else do drunken Police officers run over sunbathers while driving ATV's? Seriously? Give us a break here. ACT like law enforcement and we will respect you. Shoot graffiti artists, run over tourists, get drunk on duty.....and what do you expect? Thank you and sympathy? :LMAOOOOOOOO

Eugenio A. Alonso
Eugenio A. Alonso

He was told to stop and then ran away. He was tasered and he died, period. Everyone who doodles is an artist? one who is vandalizing private property? Guess what, you are not in Colombia where you can invade other people's property. There are still laws here, maybe in the future you might be able to take over private property and destroy it, not yet.

Cary Gonzalez
Cary Gonzalez

Miami NT has a thing for glorifying misfits that spent too much time and energy looking for trouble and they found it. Wanna be an artist? Buy some paints and a couple of canvases and get cracking.

Jason Alexander
Jason Alexander

Miami new times has a thing for this kid. They keep bringing it up. Stick to telling us where to hang out on the weekends.

James G. Camp
James G. Camp

Kid was a loser, don't sell him a can of krylon and there won't be reasons to taser him. Today, a police car was in the news as vandalised. I don't care how much the parents think their brat is an artist, graffiti isn't art.

Anthonyvop1
Anthonyvop1 topcommenter

Just once I would like for people to actually pay attention to the facts.


This "Artist" after attempting to flee turned and came at the Police in a menacing manner even after being told repeatedly to stop!


I am no fan of the police.  Far from it but in this case they acted in a proper and legal manner.


100% blame lays at the feet of Israel Hernandez and his parents who raised him.

Exiliado
Exiliado topcommenter

No, it is not art. It is vandalism.


If you think it's art feel free to invite a few of these buns to come decorate the walls of your own house.

HarryTheHandyman
HarryTheHandyman topcommenter

No, graffiti is an eyesore. Don't molest other people's property - go spray paint your room and die from the fumes instead.

Exiliado
Exiliado topcommenter

He did not deserve to die.

He deserved to be arrested and face the legal consequences of his vandalism. But he refused to let police arrest him.

That's how he brought tragedy upon himself. He is the one to blame.

Yes, it is sad.

Yes, it is tragic.

But it is what it is. 

Don't give police officers a reason to use force.

DRAKEMALLARD.0
DRAKEMALLARD.0 topcommenter

@HarryTheHandyman here is more  article Kyle the dimwitted  will not write about.  Deaf Man Allegedly Beaten, Tasered By Police After Trying To Use Sign Language. what about  Lucinda White, Pregnant Woman, Stunned With Taser By  Police .Colin Farmer, a blind 61-year-old, was shot in the back with a 50,000-volt stun gun by police. Jesse Kersey, Mentally Disabled Teen, Tasered, Beaten & Pepper Sprayed by Police

whateveryousay
whateveryousay topcommenter

You are kidding right?  He was an adult, not a child.  He was 18.

Cities have far more important things to worry about than putting up walls for graffiti.

Repressed?  The man could have purchased a canvas or sketch pad, maybe a 4x8 piece of plywood he could performed his "art" on.

This man brought it on himself.  

He got caught and should have complied.

This man rolled the dice and they came up snake eyes.

Exiliado
Exiliado topcommenter

1- He was not murdered

2- He was not tasered because of the graffiti, but because he resisted arrest. 

HarryTheHandyman
HarryTheHandyman topcommenter

Lol Kyle the dimwitted. As much as I disagree with you about almost everything, that's awesome.

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