Smith speaking during a march for police abolition in Philadelphia, June 28, 2016.

Philadelphia

Since 2015, Anthony (Ant) Smith has been a prominent organizer of the Black Lives Matter movement in Philadelphia, helping to organize the Racial Economic and Legal Justice (REAL Justice) coalition. He has led countless marches against racist police brutality, to tear down the statue of notoriously racist Mayor Frank Rizzo, and to free political prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal.

Smith’s leadership, whether by serving food every week with Food Not Bombs Solidarity or in founding the Philly Black Radical Organizing Collective, caused Philadelphia’s police to put a target on his back .

Like many Black people, Smith had been terrorized by the police throughout his entire adolescence and adulthood. He was stopped and frisked, given rough rides, and brutalized by police during protests. The state recognized his leadership and his abolitionist politics and has been trying to shut him down, along with the entire Black Liberation Movement.

In late October 2020, Smith was arrested on federal charges stemming from a protest on May 31 of that year calling for justice for George Floyd, who was murdered by Minneapolis police days earlier.  To avoid a seven-year sentence, Smith took a plea deal. He was sentenced on Nov. 28, 2023, to one year and a day in federal prison starting Jan. 12, plus two years’ probation.

Ant Smith can receive letters and cards during his incarceration.  His address is: Anthony Smith 14813-509, FC-1 Fort Dix, Federal Correctional Satellite Camp, PO Box 2000, Joint Base MDL, NJ 08640.

For more on Smith’s case, see  https://www.workers.org/2020/11/52220/

 

Betsey Piette

Betsey.Piette@workers.org

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Betsey Piette

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