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Officials: Deputies fatally shoot Black man who dropped gun

Associated Press

Los Angeles – Los Angeles sheriff's deputies shot and killed a Black man they stopped for a traffic violation after he ran from them, punched one and then dropped a gun, authorities said.

The shooting death Monday afternoon of the man identified by local media as Dijon Kizzee comes on the heels of a police shooting in Kenosha, Wisconsin, that left Jacob Blake, who is also Black, paralyzed and spurred days of protests, reinvigorating the national debate on racial injustice and policing.

Protesters also took to the streets Monday night in Los Angeles, where more than 100 marched to a sheriff’s station near the shooting. Some chanted “Say his name” and “No justice, no peace,” the Los Angeles Times reported.

Protesters clash with deputies of the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department during protests following the death of Dijon Kizzee on Monday, Aug. 31, 2020, in Los Angeles, Calif.

Sheriff’s Lt. Brandon Dean told the Times that investigators had not yet interviewed the two deputies involved, but he gave this account: When deputies tried to stop the man for riding his bicycle in violation of vehicle codes, he dropped his bike and ran. When they caught up to him he punched one of them in the face and dropped a bundle of clothes he was carrying. The deputies spotted a handgun in the bundle and opened fire.

“He was in possession of a firearm and did assault a deputy,” Dean said.

Neighborhood resident Arlander Givens, 68, questioned why deputies fired at a man who, according to the sheriff’s official, wasn’t holding a weapon.

“If he reached down to grab it, that’s different,” Givens told the Times. “But if it’s on the ground, why shoot? That means he was unarmed.”

The sheriff’s department said it could not immediately give the victim's name, but family members at the scene identified him as Kizzee, 29, CBS-Los Angeles reported.

Police say the handgun was recovered and no deputies were injured. TV news helicopters showed a gun near the body.

Dean, in a Monday afternoon news conference, said investigators had not yet interviewed witnesses or reviewed any surveillance or cellphone video.

“Give us time to conduct our investigation," he said. “We will get all of the facts of this case and eventually present them."

The Sheriff’s Department said multiple agencies are investigating.

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors is set to vote Tuesday to fund a body camera program for the sheriff’s department.

This story has been updated to correct that the dead man's reported surname is Kizzee, not Kizee.