Dijon Kizzee Wasn't holding Gun when Police Killed Him, Attorneys say

“All I want is justice for my nephew,”
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[Dijon Kizzee]
Guardian: "It doesn’t appear the deputies tried to de-escalate the situation before shooting Kizzee. Authorities previously said Kizzee had only “made a motion” toward the gun but recently revised their narrative."
Photo: YouTube

A Black man killed by Los Angeles sheriff’s deputies wasn’t holding a gun when officers fired 19 shots at him, attorneys for his family said Tuesday, contradicting police officials’ claim that he was armed during a struggle. Dijon Kizzee, a 29-year-old bicyclist, “posed no threat“ to deputies when they fired a flurry of bullets, striking him at least 15 times, the civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump said at a news conference.

“It is with a heavy heart that I’m standing with yet another Black family who has lost a loved one because of the excessive brutal force of the people who are supposed to protect and serve them,” Crump said. The attorney also represents the families of George Floyd and Jacob Blake.

“All I want is justice for my nephew,” said Fletcher Fair, Kizzee’s aunt, as she called for the deputies to be arrested. “He didn’t have to be killed like that. He’s no animal. He’s human like we are.”

Kizzee was killed 31 August in South LA after sheriff’s deputies tried to stop him for riding a bicycle in the wrong direction. They alleged that he had a weapon wrapped in a piece of clothing he was carrying, but said they were unaware of that when they stopped him for the “vehicle code violation”.

Two deputies told investigators they fatally shot Kizzee after he picked up the handgun he had dropped during a struggle with one of them, authorities said last week. A video shows him stooping down. But a wall blocks a full view, and no weapon can be seen.

It doesn’t appear the deputies tried to de-escalate the situation before shooting Kizzee. Authorities previously said Kizzee had only “made a motion” toward the gun but recently revised their narrative, saying the deputies have now claimed he had picked it up.

Kizzee was shot multiple times in the chest and arms and once in the back, authorities have said. The full autopsy hasn’t been completed yet.

Carl Douglas, another civil rights attorney who is representing Kizzee’s family, said witnesses said the deputies fired three or four shots at Kizzee, followed by a pause and then a second volley while he was on the ground.

An independent autopsy commissioned by relatives shows he was struck 15 times, Douglas said.

Read rest of story here: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/sep/23/dijon-kizzee-los-angeles...

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