Protesters demand justice over LA homeless killing

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LOS ANGELES: Angry protesters have hit the streets of Los Angeles demanding justice, two days after graphic video footage that went viral showed police shooting dead a homeless man.

Dozens of demonstrators gathered outside Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) headquarters to protest Sunday’s killing, the latest in a spate of fatal shootings of African Americans at the hands of police officers.

The Los Angeles Times — citing law-enforcement records — named the victim as 39-year-old Charley Saturmin Robinet and said he was convicted of armed robbery 15 years ago and jailed.

The man — shot dead after a struggle with police in the city’s Skid Row homeless district — was known locally as “Africa” and police have not released his name.


He was caught with $33,500 while attempting to flee the scene of a robbery, later telling authorities he robbed the bank to pay for acting classes at the Beverly Hills Playhouse, the newspaper reported.

He was freed in May, the LA Times said.

It initially identified him as a French national, but the foreign ministry in Paris denied that.

Los Angeles police chief Charlie Beck said Monday that the victim tried to grab a gun from one of four officers who were trying to restrain him.

The video of the killing triggered widespread criticism of police tactics.

“Hey, hey, ho, ho, chief Beck’s got to go!” chanted the protesters at LAPD headquarters.

“Who’s accountable? Is it a mentally challenged individual, or poorly trained officers?” asked K.W. Tulloss, the Los Angeles chapter head of the Al Sharpton-led National Action Network.

Steve Diaz, a member of poverty lobby group the Los Angeles Community Action Network, urged a police commission that was meeting to prosecute the officers involved.

He called the shooting a “modern-day lynching” that was the result of a policy “of having extra deployment in our neighborhood and nothing better to do than to target homeless individuals, people of low income, in the name of gentrification.”

A spokesman for the LA County Coroner’s office declined to confirm the identity of the victim, pending notification of next of kin.

He added that an autopsy was being carried out Tuesday to determine the cause of death.

AFP

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1 Comment

  1. Ikabod Bubwit on

    The economic hardships being experienced by many Americans (especially Blacks) are causing great stress and resentment towards authority. The police is then given a blank check by the state authorities to harass, intimidate, arrest and sometimes kill people without answering for their actions. This is a symptom of a coming fascist system in the US which will get worse as the economy gets worse and the upper 1% oligarchy begins to fear for their place in society. With an 18 trillion dollar debt and an economy that is being precariously propped by the Petrodollar system the future of the US is becoming bleak. And as leftist and socialist ideas begin to proliferate then the response of the Capitalist system will be brutal until a fascist system is put in place in the US. By now the American media outlets is completely under the control of the 1% and we hear all the lies and half-truth being broadcast daily about events in the world. The world has simply become to small to sustain US imperialism and that is why brute force is being applied off and on on countries hostile to imperialist interests. And this will get worse if an actual fascist system becomes a reality in the US and we can prepare ourselves for world war 3 !!!