LAPD released video footage of a January 3 incident involving a man who Black Lives Matter (BLM) founder Patrisse Cullors was her cousin.
The incident occurred on the corner of Venice Blvd. and Lincoln Blvd., with Keenan Anderson eventually dying in police custody.
“Keenan Anderson was a teacher, a father to a young son, and a cousin of BLM co-founder Patrisse Cullors,” former Los Angeles City Counciilman Mike Bonin tweeted Monday. “He died from cardiac arrest Tuesday (January 3) after being repeatedly tased by LAPD following a traffic incident in Venice.”
Chief Michel Moore said the footage was expedited due to the amount of public concern surrounding the incident, along with two other incidents last week where officers fatally shot two men.
The footage released by LAPD shows an officer approaching Anderson and asking him to sit while calling for backup to investigate a possible DUI incident.
Anderson later began to walk away from the officer and into the street, with additional officers arriving on scene and detaining him. While attempting to apply handcuffs on Anderson, an officer made multiple threats to use his taser if Anderson did not obey his commands to “stop resisting.”
“The officers gave chase and ordered Anderson to stop,” LAPD Capt. Kelly Muniz said in the video. “Anderson ultimately stopped and was ordered to get on the ground. As the officers attempted to take Anderson into custody, he became increasingly agitated, uncooperative and resisted the officers.”
The officer then proceeded to conduct “drive stuns” to Anderson’s laid out body, for a total of 42 seconds.
As officers engaged in a struggle, Anderson could be heard yelling for help and saying, “they’re trying to George Floyd me.”
Anderson was taken to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead hours after the incident.
“As this investigation continues, I will pay close attention to the use of the taser,” Chief Moore said during a press conference Wednesday. “Our department policy states there is no preset limit of the number of times a taser can be used in a particular situation, however, officers should generally avoid repeated or simultaneous activations to avoid potential injury to the subject.”
A toxicology examination was conducted on Anderson, with the LAPD toxicology unit saying he tested positive for cocaine and cannabis. The Los Angeles County coroner will still conduct an independent toxicology report as part of the autopsy process.
Moore said that despite the toxicology reports, further information needs to be taken into account before declaring a cause of death for Anderson.
Chief Moore added that Anderson’s actions showed “views of paranoia,” but it is not yet clear if it could have been caused by drugs found in his system, or a mental health crisis.
BLM-Los Angeles has organized rallies against Chief Moore and as memorials for those who died in connection to LAPD incidents.
“LAPD has murdered 3 people so far in 2023 and shot a 4th…who survived,” BLM-LA wrote in a January 7 tweet. “At least two of them were Black men.”
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