Officers of the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) fatally shot and killed 24-year-old Ezell Ford in South Los Angeles on Monday, August 11. The LAPD police murder of the unarmed Ezell Ford occurred just two days after 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot while surrendering to police in Ferguson, Missouri, sparking national protests against police brutality and the murder of unarmed citizens of color.
The family of Ezell Ford gathered with dozens of supporters outside the LAPD’s 77th Street police station on Friday, August 15 to demand answers from the department. A family member invited the crowd to “Walk with us…We stand as one.” The outraged residents arrived at the police station chanting “No more stops today! We refuse to live this way!” and “Hands up! Don’t shoot!”
Lavell Ford addressed ten police officers blocking the doorway to the station, revealing that no one has come to talk to his mom and dad about the death of his brother. “We can’t get away with a murder…y’all shouldn’t either,” he observed.
Other concerned South Los Angeles residents passionately exclaimed, “That was slaughter!”and “[We] don’t pay you harass us! To kill us!” One woman even suggested the police “could have used billy clubs, mace, stun guns” but instead “used guns to shoot him in his back!”
Witnesses say the eldest son of Tritobia and Edsell Ford was lying on the ground, complying with officer instructions, when he was shot three times in the back. An LAPD press release states that around 8:20 pm on Monday, August 11, 2014, Newton Patrol Division officers conducted an investigative stop in the 200 block of West 65th Street. which resulted in an officer-involved-shooting.
Another woman chastised the police for not checking if the victim was still breathing and not investigating any vital signs while he died on the street. “Y’all stood and talked over his body as if he was shit. Y’all wrong! Y’all shot him for nothing. Y’all know that boy was slow!”
“District attorney Jackie Lacey needs to file charges against the officers the involved,” repeated another woman into the microphone.
Under the Friday afternoon sun, the crowd turned their backs to the LAPD officers stretched across the entrance to the Newton police station and declared, “Shoot now!” The visibly uncomfortable police officers shifted their positions during the public shaming, uncrossing their arms and averting their gazes.
As the powerful moment escalated, men and women kneeled on the sidewalk with their hands in the air repeating, “Justice 4 Fords.”
Lavell Ford pointed out that the crowd was unarmed. He revealed, “all of us right here in this front row do not own weapons at all.” He pointed out their position on their knees, with their backs to the police, and then noted that police officers had their hands on their guns as they observed the compliant, distraught gathering of community members.
#EzellFord #Justice4Fords Protest by @PMBeers [video length 13:18] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gIuz3mcNz58