Venice Beach activist to file police complaint against blogger
Venice Beach resident Karen Wolfe says she will file a police complaint against a community activist and blogger who published her name, address and a photograph of her home on his website as a place where the homeless would be welcome to camp overnight.
Mark Ryavec, president of Venice Stakeholders Assn., listed not only Wolfe’s name and home address, but that of 10 other activists, journalists and politicians -- including Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa -- who he said shouldn’t mind having the homeless set up tents and sleeping bags outside their doors because they had expressed sympathy for them.
Venice Stakeholders want to encourage "individuals to take advantage of your welcoming spirit by offering them $20 per day to relocate," read the announcement posted Thursday on the group’s website under the headline “Westside Guide to Safe Camping Location for the Homeless.”
“Please advise me at your earliest convenience of whether you object to being included in the guide and if the address listed is correct," reads the post, which was still up as of Sunday.
Ryavec could not be reached for comment.
Wolfe said she feels threatened by the post, especially after the L.A. Weekly ran a piece on it and an anonymous online commenter expressed violent support for Ryavec’s move.
“If we are all lucky, one of them will be unfortunately insane, come up to you and give you a big thank-you for your help and then slit your throat," read the comment, which has since been removed.
Wolfe said she and other activists want Venice to be safe for residents and the 16 million tourists who visit its funky beachfront each year. They also support the Los Angeles Police Department’s recent crackdown on camping along the beachfront.
But the police action has encouraged a small group of homeless to take up a new encampment in an industrial area on 3rd Avenue. “They are just pushing the homeless from one street to another,” Wolfe said. “I don’t think we should have campgrounds on the street. But I do think there is a more effective and humane approach to it.”
The “camping guide” is a departure from other blog posts on the Venice Stakeholders Assn. website documenting the group’s position on the need for more parking, the possible closure of a local post office and a proposed 200-foot-high Ferris wheel.