VALLEJO (CBS SF) — Bay Area Native Americans on Monday continued to protest the construction of a parking lot on an ancient burial site in the Glen Cove Waterfront Park in Vallejo but reached an interim agreement before protesters could be physically removed by police.

Hours before Vallejo police were set to attempt to remove the protesters from the Glen Cove shellmound and burial site, an agreement was reached with the recreation district that has jurisdiction over the site, according to protest organizers.

The interim agreement, according to protest organizers, temporarily allows the spiritual ceremony to continue without threat of arrest.

Mark Anquoe, a member of the Kiowa tribe, said the protesters were told earlier Monday they had to be off the property by sundown.

KCBS’ Dave Padilla Reports:

“We plan to stay until the situation is resolved,” Anquoe said.

Another protester, Norman “Wounded Knee” DeOcampo, said there were about 60 protesters Monday morning and that they expected arrests Monday evening for “camping in the park.”

“This is not a park. This is the sacred burial site of our ancestors,” DeOcampo said.

Vallejo police Lt. Abel Tenorio said Monday afternoon that police did not plan to make any arrests unless there was a public safety issue or a court injunction.

About 200 people made a showing at the site Monday to defend the spiritual gathering and protect the sacred site, protest organizers said.

Glen Cove Waterfront Park, a 15-acre stretch of land and water in the southern part of Vallejo, is slated to have its natural trails enhanced and receive a new parking lot sometime this year, according to the Greater Vallejo Recreation District.

But the area, which features a protected shoreline and groves of eucalyptus trees, is also the final resting place of many Native Americans dating back more than 3,500 years, according to DeOcampo, a Vallejo native.

In a late Monday afternoon meeting mediated by the U.S. Department of Justice, recreation district officials and Native American leaders reached the interim agreement.

Key points of the agreement were that the ongoing vigil could continue at the site around the clock, that police would not make arrests Monday night, that the recreation district board would draft a new policy to allow Native Americans ongoing spiritual use of the site, and that both parties would meet soon to devise a long-term solution.

Shane McAffee, general manager of the Greater Vallejo Recreation District, said earlier Monday that the protesters would have to leave the area by sunset but that construction on the site is not imminent.

“We’re still trying to work out a schedule with our contractors,” he said. “We have park rules. The park closes at sunset. We have been lenient the past few days.”

The Sacred Site Protection & Rights of Indigenous Tribes said Friday it has filed a civil rights complaint against the recreation district and city of Vallejo.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

Comments (14)
  1. SFCARE says:

    tribal members will soon ask the state if land can be developed for cultural purposes? Gambling is like fire water to the white man. save what litle can be save of our state! california can not be turned into another nevada!

    1. nxn says:

      you are an idiot!

  2. Rosanna says:

    If it’s a burial ground and sacred land then leave it alone. Would you like it if you mother’s or fathers grave were dug up for the purpose of a parking lot. We’ve done enough damage to these people. They don’t harm anyone. I stand behind the tribe and may they get justice.

  3. charles says:

    I’m trying to figure out why stories like this upset me so much. Maybe it is the false interpretation of entitlement that is brought on my confusing compassion with weakness. As a people i encourage you to remember your heritage, but it you continually fail to grow and develop- whats the point. You have had 3500 years to secure your “ancestral grounds” . What better way to honor your ancestors then to cap them under a parking lot that has some native name with perhaps a nice placard. I apologize if that sounded harsh, it will only become a more common mentality as time goes on

    1. Neil says:

      charles. You say “fail to grow and develop”. If you REALLY knew Indian people and their Spiritual values, you’d realize how far superior they were, and in most cases still are, so far ahead of the ignorant Roman Church and the groups that came after called Protestants. These so called Churches “just knew” the Indian way of worshiping God the Creator was wrong and their way the only “correct” way. How impossibly arrogent. Indian Spirituality teaches to take no more than you need & leave the rest to replenish itself. Do today what will be of good for 7 generations to come. When you hunt take life quickly so as to cause the least suffering. Values so superior to what was forced upon them by ignorant savage whites. I’m White & apologize for what my race has done to people of color.

  4. Brian says:

    See. This is what happens when you let a bunch of immigrants into your country. This is why everyone not native to this land should be sent back where they came from. Get all those European squatters back where they belong, right?

  5. Katy Lyons Leach says:

    Do we really need the parking lot? Cement is expensive, so why not use that money towards the schools? As a former k-12 Vallejo student, I know that the schools need all the help they can get.

  6. Scott says:

    Just another form of government taking more and more and telling people [they] know what’s best for you, no matter how you feel about it…
    We have this thing called the U.S. Constitution that protects peoples like the Kiowa from the government. Our present government believes just the opposite.
    I wish the Kiowa people the best in this struggle to keep this area sacred.

  7. Chilito says:

    Your trying to sound like your stupid,right?……Your very convincing.

  8. Warriors Never Die says:

    Ludicrous. Us Natives respect what God made not what man put together to glorify themself. The buriel ground is the door way to the spirit world for the ones there that is their resting place, leave them alone. For someone to think they are superior than the Creator all I can say is you got another thing coming. Money is not God, unless your hardwired to think so.

  9. Diane says:

    I am going to say that the taking to much that does not belong to them. Do they not realize what will take place with mother nature and our spirit world. well when the pocket gets full, the sickness will come to them and the ground will open up in more them one way.Or i ansestors have been layed to rest here, .leavet them alone, mybe we shuld dig your fasmilys up to park cars on or houses, what is wrong with you all you will all dye one day AND WHEN YOU DO WHAT HAVE YOU GAIND BY MAKING OTHER SUFFER WAKE UP PUT PARKING LOTS ON YOUR FAMILYGRAVE i AM SURE YOU CAN PUT A LOT OF PARK AND RRIDE ON THE LAND OF YOUR ANSETORS. LEAVE US ALON FOR A CHANGE BEFOR OUR ANSESTORS HAUNT YOU THANKS FOR READING

  10. Really!!!!!!!! My Word!!!!! Leave them alone!!!!!!!!!! What is wrong with you people!!!!!!!!!! They have had SO MUCH already taken away FROM THEM!!!!!!!!!! they are previously protesting, there is NO REASON AT ALLTO REMOVE THEM from THEIR land! I agree with Neil. I am white and I am also ashamed of what my race has done to people of color. THEY ARE GOD’S CHILDREN TOO!!!!!!!!!!!

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