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Multiple Agencies Probe Deadly Deputy Shooting of Black Man

The Los Angeles County Inspector General and the FBI are reviewing the deadly deputy shooting of Dijon Kizzee to determine whether lethal force was justified, said Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva on Thursday.

Kizzee, 29, was fatally shot about 3:15 p.m. Monday during a confrontation with deputies near West 109th Place and South Budlong Avenue.

“Unfortunately there were people five minutes into it already tweeting what they thought about it, had no knowledge of what happened, drives the outrage that’s premature,” Villanueva said.

One of the attorneys for Kizzee’s family says he worries law enforcement will contradict state law as to what was legal when deputies first attempted to make contact with Kizzee.

“Unless the police officer has reasonable suspicion or probable cause, a person is allowed to run from police,” said Dale Galipo, an attorney for the Kizzee family.

He says deputies had no right to shoot Kizzee in the back as he ran away.

“You can’t shoot someone for running away,” he said. “In fact, that would be more reason not to shoot someone because that person clearly is not trying to attack the officer, not trying to harm the officer, he’s trying to get away from the officer.”

“People can come up with reason after reason and they do – to blame black people for our own deaths,” said Melina Abdullah, of Black Lives Matter.

Abdullah says it’s not uncommon for people to run from police out of fear – a fear she says, is full of merit.

“Police do not represent a sense of safety or reassurance for black people,” she said. “No black person I’ve met in my entire life feels safer when they see a cop on the corner or a police car roll up behind them in traffic. We feel anxious, we feel afraid.”

While the sheriff didn’t get into any specifics, he says the deputies involved are currently in the interview process and he says he grieves with the community of Westmont, where deadly crimes are on the rise.

“The crime rate in Westmont, the homicide rates itself, that place is known as death alley for a reason,” he said.

Source: NBC Los Angeles

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