300 protestors took to the streets of Anaheim earlier this week after an altercation between an off-duty police officer and local teenagers ended in gunfire. According to police, about 24 individuals were arrested on misdemeanor charges of failing to disperse, resisting arrest and battery on a peace officer.
The outrage was sparked by an incident on Tuesday in which a group of teenagers was confronted by an off-duty Los Angeles police officer outside his home on West Palais Road in Anaheim. The officer, whose name has not been released, held a 13-year-old boy by his collar while other teenagers filmed the interaction. Video footage online shows the escalation of the situation as one teen rushed the officer, who fell over a row of bushes. The officer reached into his jeans and drew a gun, firing a single shot aimed at the ground. Anaheim police officers were called to the scene, and the 13-year-old was arrested on suspicion of battery and making criminal threats and another teen was arrested on suspicion of assault and battery.
While no one was injured, immediate controversy arose from the footage, which quickly went viral. Many voiced concern over the arrests of the two teenagers, but not the officer, who has been removed from the field, per standard protocol after shootings by LAPD officers. Anaheim police have described the incident as a confrontation over an ongoing dispute between the police officer and juveniles who walk across his property, and note that the officer has previously filed at least one complaint (although it is not clear if it was against the same teenagers involved).
Protestors marched through the residential neighborhoods, chanting "Hands up, don't shoot" while others protested outside of the off-duty police officer's home. One window was broken at the police officer's home, and other homes on the street were vandalized. The Anaheim Police Department received a large influx of calls about the video, prompting a post on its Facebook page warning that, "Calling and sending emails to APD voicing your displeasure will NOT impact the outcome."
An Anaheim police spokesman has mentioned that the online footage captures only a small segment of the encounter, and that the video online has not yet been authenticated. The LAPD launched an internal investigation into the shooting in addition to investigations by Anaheim police and the Inspector General. Ultimately, the Los Angeles Police Commission will conclude whether the officer violated any LAPD rules.
The content of this website including, but not limited to, this posting, has been prepared by Budris Law Group for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. The material posted on the website is not intended to create, and receipt of it does not constitute, a lawyer-client relationship, and readers should not act upon it without seeking professional counsel. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters and electronic mail. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship.