Advertisement
California

Unarmed man killed after ‘reaching for his waistband,’ police say

The fatal shooting of a man by police officers in Long Beach this weekend was captured on video by a witness.

The 4-minute 27-second video, uploaded to a YouTube account identified as belonging to Danielle Guera, shows a white SUV parked in the middle of the street with a law enforcement cruiser stopped nearby.

At least two deputies are seen standing on the sidewalk before the driver of the SUV opens the door with what appears to be an object in his hand.

The man runs away from the deputies and down a set of stairs amid popping noises with a police dog trailing behind him. He falls to the ground at the end of the stairs amid more popping noises.

Advertisement

According to the Long Beach Police Department, deputies with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department “deployed a stun bag in an attempt to detain the suspect.”

At the same time, Long Beach officers located on the beach, “east of the foot of the stairs with an obstructed view due to the palm trees and shrubbery, heard gunshots from above and saw the suspect running toward the populated beach area,” a police statement read.

Believing the man had been involved in a gunfight and was armed, Long Beach police officers “shouted verbal commands multiple times, as the suspect continued down the stairs,” the statement said.

“The suspect failed to surrender and after officers observed him reaching for his waistband, an officer-involved shooting occurred,” the statement said.

Advertisement

The man was taken to a hospital, where he was later pronounced dead.

The shooting Sunday afternoon ended a police pursuit that had started in Compton.

According to the sheriff’s department, security officers at a Target store on South Alameda Street tried to detain the man for a “crime allegedly committed at the store.”

When deputies arrived to help security officers trying to restrain the man, he pulled out a large pair of scissors, according to a department statement.

The man then fled to his vehicle and led deputies on a chase.

Deputies pursued him to Long Beach, where local police joined in the pursuit about 3:15 p.m., said Long Beach Police Sgt. Megan Zabel.

Sheriff’s officials said the man stopped on the 1800 block of East Ocean Boulevard and refused commands to exit his vehicle.

About 15 minutes later he got out of the vehicle with a large wooden stick and again refused to follow commands, the department stated.

Advertisement

Sheriff’s officials said deputies tried to stop the man by firing a stun bag, but it had no effect and the man ran away.

Long Beach police then encountered the man and shot him.

Sheriff’s spokeswoman Crystal Hernandez told The Times no deputies were injured in the incident.

The alleged crimes of the victim are under investigation by the Compton sheriff’s station. Sheriff’s homicide detectives will investigate the use of force by deputies.

The Long Beach Police Department is investigating the officer-involved shooting. Additionally, an independent review of the incident is being investigated by the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office.

Anyone with information about the incident should contact Long Beach police Dets. Mark McGuire or Greg Krabbe at (562) 570-7244. Anyone wishing to remain anonymous may call (800) 222-8477. 

ruben.vives@latimes.com

Advertisement

Twitter: @latvives


Newsletter
Get our Essential California newsletter
Advertisement