Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck said his department has “compelling” evidence that the homeless man shot and killed by police Sunday was reaching for an officer’s gun moments before the fatal shots were fired.
At a news conference Monday Beck said the man “forcibly” grabbed an officer’s weapon during the struggle.
“There is compelling video,” he said. “There are dozens, literally, of stationary cameras there and we are reviewing all of that video — but there are also two officers with body cameras and that offers a unique perspective that we believe will be crucial to determining the propriety of the officers’ actions.”
The chief also took an unnecessary shot at other law enforcement agencies while telling the media there would be a complete investigation.
“Unlike the vast majority of my peers in law enforcement we will release the complete investigation to the Inspector General’s office,” Beck said. “If there is a criminal proceeding in this, or if there’s a civil proceeding in this we will make all evidence available during those proceedings.
While calling the event an “awful tragedy,” Beck still placed the man who fought the police.
“Had the individual not grabbed the officer’s pistol certainly we would not be having this discussion,” he said.
Pictures released at the news conference appear to show the man grabbing the officer’s firearm prior to the shooting.
Picture that LAPD says it believes shows suspect grabbing officer's weapon. pic.twitter.com/CQSsERQFli
— Steve Futterman (@sfutterman) March 2, 2015
— The Laughing Corpse (@laughingcorps) March 2, 2015