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Tensions Rise in Los Angeles Following LAPD Shooting of Gun-Grab Suspect

August 14, 2014  | 

VIDEO: Tensions Rise in Los Angeles Following LAPD Shooting of Gun-Grab Suspect

Residents and community activists are demanding answers after the fatal shooting of a mentally ill man by Los Angeles police officers on Monday night.

Earl Ofari Hutchinson, president of the Los Angeles Urban Policy Roundtable, said Wednesday he has asked for a meeting with Police Chief Charlie Beck after he saw media reports about the shooting.

"One of the things we wanted to make clear to the chief was you really want to get ahead of the situation," he told the Los Angeles Times. "Anyone that has information about it -- given the fact that it is a priority item for the LAPD and for the community -- they need to come forward."

On Wednesday, LAPD released a detailed narrative of the confrontation, alleging that the man tackled one officer and went for his gun before police opened fire.

LAPD Cmdr. Andrew Smith said two veteran gang officers were driving down West 65th Street on Monday night when they spotted Ezell Ford, 25, walking on the sidewalk. An LAPD statement, citing a preliminary investigation, said the officers got out of their car and tried to talk to Ford but that he "continued walking and made suspicious movements, including attempting to conceal his hands."

When the officers got closer, Smith said, Ford "whirled around and basically tackled the lead officer." Ford reached for the officer's gun, Smith said, prompting his partner to open fire. The officer on the ground reached for his backup weapon and also fired, Smith said.

But some who live in the area questioned the police account. A friend of Ford's family told The Times that she witnessed part of the incident and saw no struggle between the officers and Ford.

Comments (4)

Displaying 1 - 4 of 4

kevCopAz @ 8/14/2014 7:48 PM

gee….how convenient, a "friend" saw the whole event and saw no struggle at all. I wonder why we don't prosecute those that lie during a police investigation with the same vigor that Cops are prosecuted? Perhaps the LA officers are "friends" of the Ferguson Officer who shot the B/M a few days ago and just wanted to shoot a poor B/M for no reason! Funny I was a cop in a major city for 32+ years and worked mostly minority areas, both brothers did the same (one in Chicago, as did my uncle and father) yet not one of us EVER shot any minority! Either we are the exception to the "killer cop rule" or we just missed out on "free killings". This is so much crap, every LEO knows that EVERY day in our career (almost) we could shoot someone legally and do not. We use other methods to get the job done and only shoot if thats the last resort. Perhaps ALL officers should shoot ALL suspects that they legally can for a week and then the public can see the restraint Cops have each and every day!

Pup @ 8/15/2014 11:12 AM

"I want answers"!!! It's funny how many don't even know the suspect but yet want answers. They are trouble makers and so stupid to realize there's an investigation that has to take place before judgement day. Once again, it started in NYC, to St. Louie and now it's here in LA. Chain effect. Why doesn't the FBI investigate the civil rts leaders? I'm glad to retire and don't have to deal with these idiots.

Wyatt @ 8/15/2014 1:40 PM

Why did they stop him, w was PC. Was he seen committing a crime, just curious as to what made them stop him walking down the rd. If the man said he disnt want to talk, thats it, was he detaind for ? . Or did he just piss them off because he didnt w to talk

Longarm @ 8/16/2014 1:44 PM

Wyatt, not to feed the troll you probably are, but it seems you didn't read the article carefully enough. Subject was acting suspicious at night. Officers attempted to speak with him, at which point he began acting in such a way that made the officers even more suspicious, hiding his hands, as if concealing a weapon or other object. When the continued to follow him and attempt to get him to talk, he spun around, tackled a cop and tried to disarm him. This foolish move got him shot. They didn't detain him at any point, and so they don't need probable cause. Maybe you should know what the hell you're talking about before you go spouting off.

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