Who Was Chuco?

Chuco’s Justice Center is dedicated to Jesse “Chuco” Becerra and all the youth lost to the streets, prisons, police violence or deportation.  Jesse, 2-23-81 to 9-24-05, was gunned down on early Saturday morning outside a party on 21st Street and La Brea.

We loved Chuco for many reasons. He was a committed youth organizer with the YJC, a loving father, community leader, friend, son, cousin, homie, brother and nephew.  He was building a truce between three rival neighborhoods.  He was generous – quick to share a kind word, a smile and a helping hand.

We do not have an explanation for this senseless killing, but we want people to know that we will make sure that Chuco did not die in vain.

He has inspired many young people to continue.  When he was killed, we asked his family if we could honor him by naming our space Chuco’s Justice Center in his honor.  Our first Chuco’s was a small storefront on Martin Luther King Blvd. in South Central Los Angeles.  When we needed more space, Chuco’s moved into a factory on the border between South Central L.A. and Inglewood.