Police meet with Cambodian community over reports of harassment at Olney memorial

    Mourners say police mocked their grief as they gathered near the memorial at Second and Nedro streets for a 25-year-old man who was killed by police in Olney.  After meeting with community members, police have promised to reprimand officers for any inappropriate behavior. 

    Police say they shot the man after he leveled a gun at an officer on July 15.  Neighborhood resident Willette Ford was on her way to work Thursday and paused by the memorial to Vanna “Tiny” Sok.”I used to sometimes go to the doughnut shop where he would work with his mother.  I live across the street, so he was friends with my son,” Ford said. “It was a tragedy.  It was very sad.  He was a young man with two children, one on the way.  So it was a sad situation. I just pray for his family.””We presented some complaints to police about the harassment that the community has been facing while they’re trying to mourn at the memorial site,” said Joe Hanzsum, an organizer with One Love Movement, a volunteer advocacy group for Cambodians in Philadelphia. “We had several complaints –over 30 — ranging from police driving by sticking their middle finger up, to police pulling people over after they see them in prayer at the memorial site.”  A member of the board of the Cambodian Association of Philadelphia who knew Sok since he was a boy said police seemed genuinely concerned about the accusations of inappropriate behavior, and seemed to want to improve relations with the Cambodian community.  

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