LA Officials Admit Race Soldier SWAT Cops with Armored Vehicle & Automatic Rifles Gunned Down the Wrong Black Man
From [HERE] and [HERE] The Los Angeles Sheriff's Department acknowledged last week that a deputy shot and killed a black man who was mistakenly identified as a suspect in a carjacking, again bringing into question the appropriateness of a police agency's use of deadly force.
It was not yet dawn when the armored vehicles, black and hulking like Batmobiles, rumbled into the residential neighborhood in Compton, Calif. A carjacker had stolen a vehicle in Los Angeles, exchanged gunfire with sheriff’s deputies and then ditched his prize, disappearing on foot into a dense patchwork quilt of pink houses.
The armored vehicles — and the heavily armed deputies inside them — were there to find and capture the armed carjacker.
Instead, they found a different black man, Donnell Thompson.
As the carjacker hid in a house several blocks away, Thompson slept in a stranger’s yard. He was 27 years old but possessed the mental faculties of a much younger man. He was unarmed.
From inside one of the armored vehicles, however, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies knew none of this. When Thompson allegedly didn’t respond to commands, the deputies detonated flash-bangs. When he still didn’t move, they hit him with foam bullets.
And when he allegedly ran toward them, a deputy atop the armored vehicle opened fire with an assault rifle, striking Thompson twice in the torso.
Thompson died. At almost the same instant, the real carjacker was arrested.
That was July 28. For almost two weeks, the Sheriff’s Department insisted that Thompson was a second suspect in the carjacking.
On Tuesday, the department admitted it had killed an innocent man.
“No question this is a terribly devastating event,” Capt. Steve Katz [in photo] said during a news conference. He said there was “no physical evidence” connecting Thompson to the carjacking or shootout and promised a “thorough” and “complete” investigation into the shooting, according to the Associated Press.
Thompson’s relatives said they wanted more than an investigation, however. They wanted charges for the deputy who killed Thompson.
“I wouldn’t treat an animal this bad,” his sister Matrice Stanley told the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, according to the AP. “How is this justifiable?”
The incident raises questions about the militarization of law enforcement, as departments across the country increasingly use armored vehicles and assault rifles to fight crime [which is at historic lows nationwide].
“In a civilian neighborhood, they bring an urban assault vehicle,” Brian Dunn, an attorney representing the Thompson family, told the Huffington Post. “The BearCat, it’s like a tank. Their response to this situation was so aggressive. Their tactics were so aggressive.”