LOS ANGELES (CNS) - An estimated 70 demonstrators gathered Sunday near Los Angeles City Hall to protest the fatal police shooting of 32-year-old Pasadena resident Anthony McClain.
Many of the protesters rode in a caravan from Pasadena – where McClain was killed Aug. 15 -- to downtown L.A., chanting, “Say his name! Anthony McClain,'' the San Gabriel Valley Tribune reported.
“Anthony was a friend,'' Jasmine Richards, a leader of Black Lives Matter-Pasadena told the newspaper. “Anthony was a father. Anthony was a boyfriend. Anthony was a grandson.''
Art honoring the lives of McClain, Breonna Taylor and other people who have died in officer-involved shootings was displayed throughout City Hall Park. Works of art also celebrated such prominent civil rights leaders as Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X; more abstract artwork was also featured, the paper reported.
“I think all events like this should feature art,'' Valerie Rivera, said the mother of Eric Rivera, who was killed by LAPD officers in 2017. Rivera had been holding a toy gun when he was shot, then run over by police, the paper reported. Police commissioners later cleared officers of wrongdoing in the case.
On Sunday evening, Judy Chu, D-Los Angeles, issued a statement to address the matter.
“Upon hearing of Anthony McClain's death, my office began receiving calls from residents concerned that yet again another member of the Black community had been killed at the hands of a police officer. I share their concerns, their frustration, and their anger,'' Chu said. “We depend on our law enforcement, and we need to trust them to protect our community as well as responsibly deescalate violence.
“This incident is not about an individual's personal history, but whether or not the use of deadly force on a fleeing person was justifiable. I support the independent investigations into this matter and I expect that they be conducted transparently, quickly, and that they be released to the public as soon as possible. I also expect them to provide solutions so that future police interactions avoid adding to the growing death toll of Black men in our country. I hope that such actions will result in positive change and bring some peace to the family of Anthony McClain.''
Videos of the McClain shooting showed a Pasadena police officer fire at least two shots at him as he fled. McClain held what police said was a firearm, though the family's lawyer contested that description.
Pasadena police on Thursday released bodycam footage, video from the dashboard camera on the patrol car and surveillance video from a business. The officer who shot McClain did not have his camera turned on until after the shooting. Police did not explain why his camera had been turned off.
The only bodycam video of the shooting was taken by the shooting officer's partner on the scene, who did not fire at McClain. Police also released photographs of a handgun recovered at the scene.
McClain was shot about 8 p.m. Aug. 15 near Raymond Avenue and Grandview Street after the two officers pulled over a car in which he was a passenger. He died from a gunshot wound to the torso, according to the coroner's office, and was pronounced dead at Huntington Hospital in Pasadena at 9:46 that night.
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