NOTE: This is an update from an earlier post about a (graphic) video depicting members of the LAPD shooting a homeless man in Los Angeles on March 1, 2015.
Earlier today, a video taken by bystanders in Los Angeles, was posted online that showed the LAPD fighting with a (reportedly) mentally ill, homeless man. About 22 seconds into the video a tazer can be heard and then, shortly after that, four or five gunshots in rapid succession. The man, who is unidentified officially, but was known by the nickname “Africa” among other homeless people, obviously was dead at that point in what witnesses have stated began either as a result of complaints about him not taking his tent down early enough or an altercation with another homeless person within that tent.
Although there are conflicting interpretations of what exactly the officer who shot him stated and the audio on the video is difficult to make out exactly, the official story (that is still developing) appears to be yet another case of an unarmed man being shot after he “reached for my gun.” If this sounds familiar, it’s because it’s one of the go-to statements cops make whenever they shoot someone, even when there is video of that person clearly not reaching for their gun. Unfortunately, the video that is (currently) available isn’t so clear in this case. However, according to the LA Times, the LAPD, the LAPD’s “Independent” Inspector General, and the District Attorney are currently investigating and we all know how thorough a job they do when they investigate themselves.