LOS ANGELES – A black cyclist was fatally shot and killed by Los Angeles County police when police killed a black man. The county sheriff's department and a lawyer representing the man's family gave mixed reports on the shooting Tuesday.
The cyclist, 29-year-old Dijon Kizzee, was shot more than 20 times in the back Monday afternoon after two sheriff MPs tried to stop him for violating the bike code, said Benjamin Crump, who said he represents Kizzee's family .
The Los Angeles Sheriff's Department said Kizzee, whose identity was confirmed by the district medical examiner, was shot less than 20 times after dropping a gun and hitting one of the MPs.
The murder of renewed protests in the city by protesters angry at the police's deadly violence against black people. Such protests have risen almost daily across the country after George Floyd, a black man, was killed by a white Minneapolis police officer in May.
"They don't kill a race but us, and it doesn't make any sense," Fletcher Fair, Dijon Kizzee's aunt, told reporters at the shooting scene Tuesday, where activists called for an independent investigation by the California attorney general. "Why we?"
Protests also continued in Kenosha, Wisconsin, after a white police officer shot and paralyzed Jacob Blake, a black man, seven times in the back. The unrest became a major issue ahead of the November presidential election.
President Donald Trump, a Republican, arrived in Kenosha Tuesday to rally his base of white supporters by defending police against criticism of brutality.
Kizzee was riding a bike in the Westmont neighborhood of Los Angeles County on Monday afternoon when two passing Sheriff MPs tried to stop him.
Kizzee abandoned his bike and ran a block off with the chasing MPs, Brandon Dean, a spokesman for the sheriff's department, told reporters Monday night. Kizzee then slapped one of the MPs in the face and dropped a bundle of clothing he was wearing, the department said.
MPs said there was a semi-automatic pistol in the dropped bundle, and both started shooting Kizzee, the department said.
Dean said he didn't know what part of the bike code Kizzee suspected of violating or how many times MPs shot him, other than it was less than 20. His office declined to answer questions about the shootings and the status of the two MPs on Tuesday.
The coroner was scheduled to perform an autopsy on Kizzee on Tuesday.
Crump, a civil rights attorney known for representing black victims of police violence across the country, wrote on a Twitter post: "They say he ran, dropped his clothes and gun. He didn't pick it up, but they did Police shot him. " The back has left him for hours more than 20 times. "
Crump asked people on Twitter to send him videos of the incident and said the sheriff's deputies were not required to wear body cameras.
(Reporting by Lucy Nicholson in Los Angeles and Jonathan Allen in New York; Additional reporting by Heather Timmons in Washington; Editing by Leslie Adler and Cynthia Osterman)