Growing up in a South Central Los Angeles community known as Watts, I’ve persevered through family deaths, racism, a fatherless home, gang violence, robberies, police brutality and ultimately, life as a person of color growing up in the most violent neighborhood in Southern California. That same perseverance has instilled this ambition inside me like no other, and has taught me how to fight through obstacles. That fight took me out of Watts to become the first African-American student body president of the number one transfer community college in the nation, Santa Monica College. I would then go on to apply and be accepted to USC.
While at USC I majored in Accounting and aspired to learn how to teach financial literacy to people trapped in poverty. The dream school I had envisioned became a nightmare within a month into my academic progress; although I felt as if I didn’t belong, I continued to fight. Last spring, I was accused of something I did not commit. Despite a lack of evidence, and numerous appeal attempts, I was eventually expelled. I could not afford a lawyer, so I went through the university’s investigation without legal representation. Now my case has been turned over to the police, and they are planning to press charges unless I give a statement to the police. I don’t feel comfortable making any statements without an attorney to advise me. However, I can not currently afford any of the attorneys I have spoken with.
I have dedicated my life to giving back to my community, and I don’t want to lose my future over a crime that I did not commit. Please help me continue the fight to lift myself and others out of injustice and poverty by donating to my legal defense fund. ANYTHING HELPS! No matter what happens, I’ll continue to push forward for my family, my friends, my community, and for anyone who looks like me and has suffered from unfortunate circumstances such as my own.
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