LA Sheriff’s Deputies Kill Black Man Who Dropped Gun

September 1, 2020 Updated: September 1, 2020

The Los Angeles Sheriff’s Office said one of its deputies shot and killed a black male who dropped a handgun, prompting calls for demonstrations.

According to a live stream, protesters gathered in a neighborhood in Downey, California, and other areas, while reports said that a crowd marched to the sheriff’s office station and demanded justice. They chanted the usual slogans including “Black Lives Matter” and “no justice, no peace,” the Los Angeles Times reported.

Sheriff’s deputy Juanita Navarro-Suarez told reporters the incident took place at 3:15 p.m. near West 109th Place and South Budlong Avenue. A man who was riding a bicycle was stopped by deputies for violations. He then ran away before the deputies caught up with him, leading to a melee between the man and the deputies.

The suspect then allegedly punched a deputy and dropped some clothing, revealing a black handgun, officials said. Two deputies opened fire and shot him several times. It’s not clear if the gun dropped before or after the shooting.

Sheriff’s Department Lt. Brandon Dean told ABC News: “Our suspect was holding some items of clothing in his hands, punched one of the officers in the face, and then dropped the items in his hands. The deputies noticed that inside the clothing items he dropped was a black semiautomatic handgun, at which time a deputy-involved shooting occurred.”

Black Lives Matter organizers in Los Angeles identified the suspect as Dijon Kizzee, calling on protesters to gather.

“Los Angeles County Sheriffs killed a Black man … Dijon … on 109th and Budlong and left his body face down in the dirt. We need all hands on deck,” Black Lives Matter Los Angeles wrote on Twitter.

Officials said an investigation is ongoing.