A screenshot of Open Vallejo's police violence database

Open Vallejo

A screenshot of Open Vallejo’s police violence database.

Editor’s note: This database was updated on June 10, 2024, to reflect the secret death of Darryl Dean Mefferd.

At Open Vallejo, we believe everyone has the right to know about the public institutions that serve them. So today we are publishing a dataset detailing 25 years of police shootings and other lethal violence in this otherwise-quiet city of 120,000 residents.

The result of more than a year of public records research, we believe this is one of the most comprehensive accountings of Vallejo police violence available. Still, it is a work in progress. We plan to add more information as we confirm it, and to expand the categories about which we report over time.

We also hope readers will enrich these basic facts with the stories of those this community has lost. We will soon announce a submission system that makes it easy to share photographs, insights, anecdotes, and more. We look forward to reading your submissions — as well as tips that clarify, or even challenge, official narratives.

Open Vallejo is making this dataset available under a Creative Commons CC BY-SA 4.0 license. That means it may be used, at no charge, for both commercial and noncommercial purposes, including by major news organizations, researchers, and others. All we ask is that you abide by the reasonable terms of the license, which includes crediting and linking to us. Works that are referenced within the dataset, such as news articles and photographs, remain the intellectual property of their owners.

We hope this information can shed useful light on the challenges facing Vallejo — a diverse city just 45 minutes from San Francisco, where despite it all, Jim Crow still stalks like a wraith.

Explore the data — your data — here.

Geoffrey King is the executive editor of Open Vallejo. Prior to founding Open Vallejo, Geoffrey worked as an attorney and journalist focused on free expression, open government, press freedom and privacy. He is a proud native of Vallejo, California.