Family of man shot, killed by Anaheim police files lawsuit as community protests at City Hall

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Anaheim police discuss a game plan for what's shaping up to be a long Tuesday night at City Hall.

Ed Joyce/KPCC

Rally-goers hold signs at Anaheim City Hall, protesting the officer-involved shooting of 25-year-old Manuel Diaz.

Ed Joyce/KPCC

Benjamin Rojas speaks at a Tuesday evening outside Anaheim City Hall. Over 200 people are in attendance.

Ed Joyce/KPCC

City Council members in a workshop session at Tuesday evening. Outside, hundreds of protesters bang on and peek in doors.

The family of a man shot to death by Anaheim police Saturday is suing the City of Anaheim for $50 million.

Manuel Diaz’s family is filing a $50 million wrongful death claim with the City of Anaheim — plus a lawsuit in federal court that alleges Anaheim police officers violated Diaz’s civil rights. The family’s attorney claims an officer shot Diaz in the back, then shot him again in the head as he fell to his knees.

Police describe the 25-year-old Diaz as a documented gang member from Santa Ana, who ran, along with two companions, when a pair of officers approached them. Anaheim police also say no gun was found at the scene.

The department has not explained why the officer shot at Diaz. The shooting has triggered several nights of protests and unrest in Anaheim, including a mass rally attended by over 200 people Tuesday night.

Protesters outside City Hall chanted and banged on the lobby doors, while Anaheim's city council attempted a workshop session inside. The Council was scheduled to begin accepting public comments from the over-capacity hall at 5 p.m., but was delayed due to the crowds.

Demonstrators later spilled into the streets of downtown Anaheim. Police barricaded one end of Broadway Avenue as protesters chanted and argued with officers.

Anaheim police spokesman Sgt. Bob Dunn said he could not comment on the lawsuit against the department. The Orange County District Attorney's Office is investigating the shooting along with the FBI.

The two Anaheim officers involved are on paid administrative leave.

Anaheim is also facing an ACLU lawsuit alleging that Anaheim "shuts out" Latinos from the electoral process, with Latinos not being represented on the Council. The plaintiffs have proposed a different method for electing council members that they say will provide better representation for Latino residents.

This story has been updated.

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