No Charges For LAPD Officers Who Shot And Killed Ezell Ford
Yes, you read that correctly: No charges for the two LAPD officers who shot and killed Ezell Ford in August 2014. According to The Atlantic + Los Angeles County prosecutors, officers Sharlton Wampler and Antonio Villegas will not face any criminal charges for their actions. For those who have forgotten about Mr. Ford’s story (or just lost count with how many victims there have been) — the two LAPD officers stopped Ford and engaged in a physical altercation with him, citing him as an “immediate threat” to them. Ford, 25, who was diagnosed with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, reached for Wampler’s gun, prompting the two officers to open fire.
In relation to everything else going on at the time, the Ezell Ford shooting took place two days after the fatal police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri. Huge protests—both local and abroad—happened as a result of the travesty. The following year, the Los Angeles Police Commission determined that Villegas’ actions were justified and Wampler’s actions violated LAPD policy, which included his initial contact with Ford and his decision to use lethal and nonlethal force. The mayor, Eric Garcetti, responded to Tuesday’s decision, saying, “I accept the decision made by the District Attorney, but rededicate my administration to the search for better ways to protect the safety of all Angelenos, and reiterate my support for the Police Commission’s goal of reinforcing de-escalation in the training of our officers.”
Local activists continue to fight, describing Ford’s death as an “unjust killing,” while others in the #BlackLivesMatter movement continue to mention Ezell Ford’s name at the Police Commission’s weekly meetings. Records show, according to The Los Angeles Times, that the DA’s office has not charged an LAPD officer in an on-duty shooting since 2000. Jackie Lacey has been routinely under fire for the length of time it has taken her office to even reach a decision in Ford’s death.
Wampler and Villegas sued the city last summer, alleging they were kept on desk duty and unfairly denied advancement because of their race.
Below, you can get a feeling from the e-streets on how they react to these lack of charges for the LAPD.
— L (@teasandsweets) January 24, 2017
— Kate Mather (@katemather) January 24, 2017
Say his name #EzellFord My heart goes to his family today. I’m so sorry!
— Lucky (@mosaicgraffiti) January 24, 2017
Not a single charge for anyone involved in the murder of #EzellFord. Fuck the police and the system that protects them, forever.
— ⓋCollinⒶ (@shitweasel666) January 24, 2017
— Jasmyne Cannick (@Jasmyne) January 24, 2017
H/T: The Atlantic