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Justice for Jesse Phinney

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On Monday, December 4, our brother, son and husband Jesse Phinney, a documentary filmmaker and cameraman who travelled widely for work and loved to become a neighbor to people of all walks of life wherever he went, died in police custody in Cebu, Philippines where he had lately been living.

We were told it was a suicide. He had been brought in on charges of human trafficking earlier that evening, without any evidence, because of his association with local families he had befriended.

He was arrested without provocation or evidence. The nature of his death provokes many questions and extraordinary suspicion of those who held him in custody. Expensive camera equipment and drones have been seized by the NBI. A series of withdrawals from his checking account took place--after his death. And, simply, Jesse was not a person who would have killed himself--under any circumstances.

The children and mothers have contacted us to proclaim his innocence, his deep kindness to them, and their heartbreak at his death, offering us, unsolicited, messages and video testimony. We are putting together a team of lawyers and investigators to advocate for us on the ground in the Philippines, and to find out what really happened, so we may get #JusticeForJesse.


  • Jan Gardner
    • $90 
    • 6 yrs

Organizer and beneficiary

Emily Phinney
Los Angeles, CA
Dominika Posseren

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