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Welcome to the 20th Annual Allied Media Conference!

Browse all 300+ sessions below on our online schedule. Please note: bookmarking a session on our online schedule does not guarantee you a place in the session. All sessions are first come, first serve.

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Theresa Smith

Law Enforcement Accountability Network
Theresa Smith, the mother of Caesar Cruz, never chose the life of an activist, but this path chose her. Born and raised in Southern California, Theresa’s parents met in the Orange Groves as migrant workers from the Philippines and Mexico. Life was never easy for Theresa but when Anaheim Police killed her son, Caesar Cruz, her life was never the same. On December 11, 2009 Caesar Cruz was fatally shot by officers of the Anaheim Police Department on the basis of a false tip from a police informant. He was shot 15 times in the back by five officers while he was still strapped in his seatbelt. Cruz was a husband and a father of five. The city of Anaheim eventually settled with Caesar`s family after a lengthy court battle, but failed to acknowledge any wrongdoing on behalf of the city or the officers. Theresa Smith knew a settlement was not enough to make up for her son’s loss. She participated in local rallies and vigils, connected with other mothers and families grieving their own loved ones, began speaking at lo
Theresa Smith, the mother of Caesar Cruz, never chose the life of an activist, but this path chose her. Born and raised in Southern California, Theresa's parents met in the Orange Groves as migrant workers from the Philippines and Mexico. Life was never easy for Theresa but when Anaheim Police killed her son, Caesar Cruz, her life was never the same. On December 11, 2009 Caesar Cruz was fatally shot by officers of the Anaheim Police Department on the basis of a false tip from a police informant. He was shot 15 times in the back by five officers while he was still strapped in his seatbelt. Cruz was a husband and a father of five. The city of Anaheim eventually settled with Caesar's family after a lengthy court battle, but failed to acknowledge any wrongdoing on behalf of the city or the officers. Theresa Smith knew a settlement was not enough to make up for her son's loss. She participated in local rallies and vigils, connected with other mothers and families grieving their own loved ones, began speaking at local and national events, and started a weekly support group in her garage. In 2010, Theresa founded the Law Enforcement Accountability Network (LEAN) to support other mothers and families in her situation and advocate for changes in the relationship between law enforcement and local communities.