Cop Watch

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Protests Follow Police Shooting of Unarmed Boy

Angry residents today protested the police shooting of an unarmed boy in South Los Angeles on Sunday morning after police said the 13-year-old auto theft suspect backed his car toward an officer.

The boy was identified as Devin Brown, coroner's spokesman David Campbell said today. Police did not identify the officer involved in the shooting, which occurred shortly before 4 a.m. at West 83rd Street and South Western Avenue.

LAPD internal affairs has begun its investigation into whether the officer's actions were in line with department policy. Police said that the officer fired 10 shots into the car. Deputy Chief Michael Berkow said the suspect was not armed.

The slaying occurred nearly a year after LAPD officers fatally shot another fleeing motorist as he backed his car toward police at the end of a widely televised, 90-minute chase. That incident, which occurred near Santa Monica High School, prompted Police Chief William J. Bratton to announce in March that the department should place new restrictions on officers' ability to fire at moving vehicles.