On Monday afternoon, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies shot and killed a Black man after initiating what some are calling a “pretextual” bicycle stop for an alleged “vehicle code violation.”
At around 3:15 p.m. on Monday, in the vicinity of West 109th Place and Budlong Avenue in South LA, LASD deputies saw a man on a bike, and chose to stop him for “riding a bicycle in an unlawful manner.” (The LASD spokesperson could not identify the code in question.)
According to the sheriff’s department, the man, identified as 29-year-old Dijon Kizzee by Black Lives Matter organizers, got off his bike and ran from the officers as they attempted to stop him. Kizzee was reportedly carrying a bundle of clothing with him as he fled.
According to the sheriff’s department’s account of the shooting, the deputies caught up with the man several blocks away, and as they closed in, Kizzee punched one of the officers and dropped what he had been carrying. Officers say they saw a semi-automatic handgun lying on the ground among the clothing items.
That’s reportedly when the deputies opened fire on Kizzee, allegedly shooting him multiple times (in the back, according civil rights attorney Ben Crump, who is representing the Kizzee family), despite the fact that Kizzee had dropped the gun he had been carrying, and thus was, at that moment, unarmed.