Crime & Justice

LAPD officer-involved shootings up 21 percent

The latest fatal LAPD shooting occurred Thursday in the Mid-Wishire area.
The latest fatal LAPD shooting occurred Thursday in the Mid-Wishire area.
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Officer-involved shootings are on the rise at the LAPD: 20 people were shot by officers so far this year compared with an average of 15 or 16 during the first half of other recent years, according to officials. Nine people have died so far this year.

“It is a tough year in policing,” said Assistant Chief Michael Moore. He declined to talk about individual incidents, and noted violent crime is also up around the city.

The number climbed this week - a violent one where law enforcement officers across Los Angeles County fatally shot six people by Friday afternoon. Three people were killed by Sheriff’s deputies, two by LAPD officers, and one by a West Covina police officer.

According to police accounts, two people advanced on officers with knives, one pulled a gun, and one used a car to ram officers. One man allegedly reached for a deputy’s gun.

In one unusual case, a man allegedly took the Taser away from an officer and used it on him during a struggle. All of the people shot were men between the ages of 27 and 46.

Moore said the LAPD plans more training in the next few weeks to remind officers “they use time and cover and distance” from suspects to deescalate situations when possible. “The preservation of life is one of our most sanctimonious values.”

At the same time, he insists there is no epidemic of police shootings.

“The message out there is disproportionate to what is reality,” he said.

Chief Charlie Beck has raised concerns about one LAPD shooting this year. He called the police shooting of Brendon Glenn in Venice “troubling.” Glenn, a homeless man, was unarmed.

In another ten cases this year, LAPD officers fired their guns but missed their targets.

Sheriff’s officials were not immediately available for comment on the recent spate of shootings.

Fatal Police Shootings July 3-9: