21.9 C
Brunei
Saturday, December 10, 2022
21.9 C
Brunei
Saturday, December 10, 2022
More
    - Advertisement -

    AG won’t seek charges in LAPD shooting of man with fake gun

    SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA (AP) – California’s attorney general (AG) said on Thursday that he will not seek criminal charges against Los Angeles police officers who fatally shot a man on Hollywood Boulevard last year, even though it turned out the gun he carried was fake.

    The shooting caused panic on the busy street, with tourists and bystanders ducking for cover.

    It’s the first such review under a new California law that requires the state Department of Justice (DOJ) to review all incidents where an officer shoots and kills an unarmed civilian in the state.

    In this case, officers said they responded before noon on July 15, 2021, to reports that Matthew James Sova was walking with a handgun along the Walk of Fame, and at least one person reported seeing him pointing the gun at someone.

    He also had a small black folding knife with an open blade that he earlier pointed toward a building security guard, according to the department’s report.

    A police officer taking aim at a suspect pointing what appears to be a weapon at an officer along Hollywood Blvd in the Hollywood section of Los Angeles. PHOTO: AP

    Sova “pointed what appeared to be a pistol, but was actually a lighter that looked like a firearm, at Officer (Christopher) Tabela”, said Attorney General Rob Bonta.

    “After a detailed analysis, DOJ concluded there was substantial evidence that officers (Isaiah) Galvez and Tabela acted in self-defence, and in the defence of others.”

    The two LAPD officers fatally shot Sova less than a block from the Dolby Theatre, where the Oscars are normally presented, and near the famed corner of Hollywood Boulevard and Highland Avenue. “Man, why?” Tabela could be heard asking Sova before the officer fruitlessly began performing CPR.

    Although Bonta’s office cleared the officers, it recommended that the LAPD make sure officers are trained on calling in the department’s Mental Evaluation Unit and review whether Sova’s death “could have been avoided”.

    The initial call to LAPD said Sova was “acting crazy and loudly saying a bunch of different things”. He’d had 12 previous contacts with law enforcement related to his mental health, 10 of them with the LAPD Mental Health Unit.

    Using other means “to address a potential mental health crisis… may have given the officers time to engage in meaningful de-escalation”, the review found.

    In this case, “both officers transitioned to a lethal response almost immediately upon arriving at the scene”. Chief Michel Moore said the LAPD will review the recommendations.

    - Advertisement -
    - Advertisement -
    spot_img

    Latest article

    - Advertisement -
    spot_img