Author: Jeffrey

The Black Man Who Was Shot by Police

The Black Man Who Was Shot by Police

Roots of L.A. City Council’s leaked audio scandal can be traced back decades

On the second day of a public hearing on the city’s use-of-force policy, L.A. City Councilman Mike Bonin listened with growing frustration to the testimony of a young black man who had been shot by police officers in 2015.

“If you’re a good person you will stop, but you’re not a good person if you can’t even control your anger or frustration, or if you can’t control yourself,” said Bonin, explaining his frustration at the LAPD’s enforcement of the new use-of-force policy.

The man had been walking and shouting on a street in Hollywood, when several officers stopped him, one with a drawn Taser, after a radio call for a loud party going on nearby. When the man got closer, he spotted officers searching through his pockets for drugs — an increasingly common mistake for people of color in situations where cops pull them over.

“You have children who are supposed to be safe,” he remembered the officer saying.

“My children know nothing about this. I don’t know who’s watching them 24/7. They don’t know nothing about this,” he told the council:

“If we can’t control our anger and frustration, how are we going to teach them? They’re not learning in school. They’re not learning in the streets, because we’re not teaching them how to deal with these situations.”

The man was shot as he ran away, leading to a manhunt that ended with a shooting in the back in which two people were killed. The man who was shot, who only wanted to be known by his first name, B.J., died from his wounds days later. As he lay dying on the sidewalk, he shouted: “Fuck L.A.”

B.J.’s story, along with many other stories

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