What are the Rewards of Serving the Racist System? According to the Funktionary, a probot is a propagandizing programmed robot. A Black probot, mechanically efficient but with no awareness, is a probot programmed in service of white domination. Jackie Lacey has a history of hooking up cops who terrorize Blacks & Latinos. In August she put together a no jail felony plea for a white cop who kicked a Black man's head like a football after a bicycle traffic stop. [more] And now this;
From [HERE] and [HERE] Two Los Angeles police officers who fatally shot 25-year-old Ezell Ford, an unarmed mentally chalenged black man, will face no criminal charges over the 2014 killing, the district attorney said on Tuesday, calling their actions “legally justified.” A coalition of religious and community groups announced Wednesday it plans to begin a recall effort targeting Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey [in photo] over her failure not to prosecute. [MORE]
Ford's shooting triggered multiple massive demonstrations. After his death his parents said their son had been diagnosed with depression, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, and that everybody in the neighborhood, as well as police, were aware of this. A neighbor said the officers who shot Ford had harassed him in the past, including the day before the shooting. [MORE]
In a redacted report, Jackie Lacey said Officers Sharlton Wampler and Antonio Villegas spotted Ford leaving a “known gang area” on Aug. 11, 2014, and suspected he was trying to dispose of something illegal.
As Wampler tried to apprehend Ford, the two men scuffled and ended up on the ground with Ford reaching for the officer’s gun, according to the report. Villegas then shot Ford twice, the report said, while Wampler pulled out a backup weapon, reached around Ford’s back, and also shot him.
Gang Area? Courts have held that the reputation of an area [such as a gang area] although it may create suspicions about otherwise innocent activities, cannot furnish probable cause when the activities themselves are unexecptional. [MORE] Here, the white DA belives that the movement of Ford's hands should be given great weight - apparently finding his hand movement to be highly suspicious.
13 Seconds. According to LAPD commander Andy Smith in August 2014, Wampler and Villegas saw Ford walking on the sidewalk at 65th Street and left their vehicle. Wampler said he knew Ford, but did not recognize him at the time. The two officers confronted Ford as part of an "investigative stop" at around 8:20 pm. They told investigators that though they carried a Taser in the patrol car, neither took it out, and Villegas instead drew his gun. Villegas said he did believed Ford may have been armed because he was in "a gang area". Villegas soon put the gun away and repositioned himself as the "cover" officer while Wampler approached Ford. After the release of Ford's autopsy, LAPD chief Charlie Beck said Ford walked away after Wampler and Villegas left their vehicle to speak to him. An earlier press release said Ford looked towards the officers but kept walking and "made suspicious movements, including attempting to conceal his hands". According to Beck, Wampler and Villegas told detectives Ford concealed his hands as they attempted to stop him. According to Beck's account the officers then followed Ford to a driveway where he crouched between a car and some bushes. Wampler and Villegas said they believed Ford was trying to dispose of drugs that were in his possession, which Wampler felt was sufficient evidence to arrest him. No drugs were found in the vicinity, however.
Smith said as they were walking towards him Ford "whirled around and basically attacked the lead officer." Wampler told investigators he had approached Ford from behind and pulled back his shoulder with the intention of handcuffing him. The officers and an LAPD spokesman said in August 2014 that Ford had "tackled" one of the officers and that a struggle ensued after Ford tried to remove the officer's handgun from its holster. Smith said Ford "grabbed the officer around the waist, threw him to the ground and was laying on top of the officer" when he was shot. In Beck's account, Wampler and Villegas told detectives that Ford had been on top of one of the officers and reaching for the officer's gun when they both opened fire. Wampler told investigators he had been tackled by Ford and had landed on top of Ford, but Ford rolled over immediately and took the top position. Villegas responded by pushing his knee into Ford's back and attempting to handcuff him. Wampler said he then felt Ford grasping at his holstered pistol. Villegas said he feared for his life and that of his partner and shot Ford in the arm, then at Wampler's urging fired a second round into Ford's side. Wampler said Ford continued to resist, causing him to retrieve his backup gun and used it to reach around Ford and shoot him in the back. Smith said Ford had been on the ground when he was shot, and said "This was an extremely rapidly unfolding event. Basically the fight was on."
After the shooting, Wampler handcuffed Ford. Wampler told investigators a crowd appeared, including one man who appeared angry but left after Wampler pointed his gun at him. Thirteen seconds elapsed From the time that Wampler and Villegas left their vehicle to the first shot. LAPD lieutenant Ellis Imaizumi said the officers sustained minor abrasions that did not require hospitalization. An LAPD news release said neither had been injured. Smith said Ford had been unarmed.
According to Mr. Ford's $75 million lawsuit filed [[PDF] in March 2015, Wampler and Villegas intentionally and/or negligently fatally shot unarmed decedent Ford multiple times with their firearms" after he had complied with their order to lie on the ground.
Two witnesses disputed the officers' claim that Ford had concealed his hands, and said that he had raised his hands as the officers left their vehicle. They also said that Ford did not tackle an officer, and was instead tackled to the ground by one of the officers. Tritobia Ford said her son was lying on the ground and complying with officers' orders when he was shot. Other family members supported her account, including a man who identified himself as Ford's cousin and said:
They laid him out and for whatever reason, they shot him in the back, knowing mentally, he has complications. Every officer in this area, from the Newton Division, knows that — that this child has mental problems. The excessive force ... there was no purpose for it. The multiple shootings in the back while he's laying down? No. Then when the mom comes, they don't try to console her ... they pull the billy clubs out.
Harrison, who said he saw the shooting from a second-story window, said Ford had put his hands in the air when he was tackled to the ground and shot three times. Harrison said that while on the ground Ford "was struggling like he didn't want anyone on top of him, didn't want anyone holding him down". Two women who were in the home adjacent to the driveway said Ford had not been on top of one of the officers, and had instead been face-down with the officer on top of him. Dorene Henderson, a friend of the Ford family, said she heard someone yell "Get down, get down." She said she heard a pop and neighbors telling officers "He's got mental problems." Hill said "I was sitting across the street when it happened ... The cops jumped out of the car and rushed him over here into this corner. They had him in the corner and were beating him, busted him up, for what reason I don't know he didn't do nothing." Hill said he heard an officer say "Shoot him", followed by three gunshots, while Ford was on the ground. Ina Smalls, who lives across the street from Ford, said she ran outside after hearing gunshots and saw Ford "on the ground, shot dead, handcuffed on his stomach". Smalls said she did not believe that Ford had tried to take the officer's gun. Fred Sayre, Ford's parents' attorney, said none of the witnesses he had spoken to could decisively say whether Ford grabbed for the officer's gun. [MORE]
The officers knew Ford was "mentally challenged" and that he was not committing a crime at the time, the lawsuit stated. The also alleged that the actions of the two officers were "motivated" by the fact that Ford was black and by their "prejudice, disdain and contempt for African Americans or persons of black skin tone." It alleged the LAPD maintained policies and practices that allowed racial profiling and the use of excessive force against African Americans. A tentative settlement with the city of Los Angeles was reached in November.
“Although the loss of Mr. Ford’s life is tragic, we believe the officers’ actions were legally justified and the evidence supports our decision,” Lacey said in a statement.
The family’s attorney, Steve Lerman, said that while Lacey’s decision was expected, it was disappointing.
“It’s politics as usual,” said Lerman, who represented motorist Rodney King, who sued the Los Angeles Police Department after he was beaten by officers in 1991 in an attack that was filmed by a witness and broadcast around the world.
“It’s very discouraging. Unless criminal penalties are imposed on officers who commit homicidal acts, then there is no justice for anybody, whether it’s black, white, brown or other,” the lawyer said in a phone interview.
Lerman, who said Ford suffered from schizophrenia and manic depression and had the “thinking pattern of a child,” said he had been in settlement negotiations with the city over a $75 million lawsuit filed by Ford’s family.
Lacey’s decision not to file criminal charges came almost 20 months after the Los Angeles Police Commission ruled that Wampler violated several department policies in the killing. Villegas was cleared in the shooting.
Both officers were taken off street duties. That prompted the pair to sue the city last year, alleging the move was racially motivated. Villegas is Latino and Wampler is white.