Communication of Huang Tsun Hsien and F. A. Bee filed May 4, 1882 L. C. Wittenmyer, Clerk
H. I. C. M's. Consulate General.
San Francisco May 3, 1882
To the Honorable the Board of Supervisors of Contra Costa County
I desire officially to call your attention to the riot that occurred in the town of Martinez on Wednesday evening of May [sic] 17, 1882 and to the outrages that were perpetrated on the Chinese residents of that town on that occasion.
Notwithstanding the fact that it is a matter of common rumor who the originators and inciters of the riot were and that they include among their number some of the County officers still the Sheriff of the County who is ex-officio the peace officer of the County and whose duty it is by law to ferret out criminals and bring them to justice has taken no action in the matter but on the contrary declines to do anything unless complaints are sworn to by other parties and warrants placed in his hand for service. He claims that it is not his business to do detective work and that he is obliged to go no further than simply to serve the warrants. We do not believe the Sheriff would advance this opinion had he examined the law regulating the duties of Sheriff.
Of the Chinese attacked by the Mob eight have been seriously injured on of whom has since died from the injuries received. In addition to this the Mob not satisfied with inflicting upon a lot of unfortunate and defenseless men seriously bodily injuries robbed and plundered them and carried away and destroyed property to the value of $2,000.
The leaders of this lawless crowd claim in justification of their acts that they desired to remove these people from the town. This they had no right to do under the laws and treaties of the United States. If the Chinese created a nuisance where they resided the law affords ample remedies for its abatement.
We are however inclined to disbelieve the statements of the parties implicated in this dastardly outrage for if their motives were such as they allege them to be it is incomprehensible why they showed resort to murder and robbery two of the most heinous crimes known to the Penal Code to effect [sic] their ends.
We therefore respectfully demand from your County damages for the loss and destruction of property and a reasonable remuneration for the injuries which these people have received at the hands of residents of the County and also that your officers arrest the guilty parties and bring them to justice. We have the honor to be with much respect.
Your obedient servants
Huang Tsun Hsien, Consul General
F. A. Bee
His Imperial Chinese Majesty Consul