An LAPD officer named Cairo Palacios was justified in shooting an unarmed man in the face last year because the man had a towel wrapped around his arm, which made the cop fear for his life, according to a Los Angeles Police Commission report released Tuesday.
The report mentions new details about the June 19, 2015 shooting that left Walter DeLeon alive but with a huge chunk of his head missing, claiming for the first time that witnesses told police they also thought he had a gun under the towel.
And none of the two dozen witnesses interviewed by DeLeon’s lawyer said anything close to that.
A report made public after the commission’s finding revealed new details about the June 19 shooting. LAPD investigators found several witnesses who also thought DeLeon was pointing a gun at police, the report said. Minutes before he was shot, DeLeon told a witness to call 911 and report to the operator that he was carrying a gun, according to the document.
The names of the officers, as well as the witnesses, were redacted from the copy of Beck’s report that was made public Tuesday, but the LAPD previously identified Palacios as the officer who shot DeLeon.
His attorney blasted the commission’s decision, saying his office had interviewed over two dozen witnesses whose accounts of the shooting differ from what the LAPD said. Attorney Mark Geragos rejected the idea that DeLeon told a witness to call 911, saying there was “no basis for that.”
“We look forward to getting into a courtroom and showing exactly how not only this was not in policy, but also that criminal charges should have been brought,” he said. “There was absolutely no justification for the use of deadly force. None. He didn’t have a gun.”
We also look forward to hearing what the witnesses say, including the ones brought that were listed in the police report.
That is, if they even exist.
Two men who witnessed and video recorded the aftermath of the shooting made no mention that DeLeon appeared to have been carrying a gun as you can see in the gruesome video below.