BLM co-founder's cousin was tasered SIX times by cops before he died
BLM co-founder Patrisse Cullors’ cousin was tasered SIX times in 42 seconds as other officers tried to pin and handcuff him in the street as he yelled, ‘help me please’ before dying hours later in hospital
- Keenan Anderson, 31, was tasered six times in 42 seconds as he was restrained
- Video footage released by the LAPD shows the struggle during which Anderson behaved erratically after he reportedly caused a ‘felony hit-and-run crash’
- Anderson’s death has raised concerns by Mayor Karen Bass, and a number of community activist on whether the officers tactics were too excessive
- The LAPD’s actions are now the subject of an internal investigation
BLM co-founder Patrisse Cullors’ cousin was tasered six times in 42 seconds as other officers tried to pin and handcuff him on a California street as he yelled, ‘help me please,’ before he died in the hospital hours later.
Officers from the Los Angeles Police Departments discharged the taser multiple times on Keenan Darnell Anderson, 31, after he began acting erratically when he attempted to flee from police and resist arrest after a ‘felony hit-and-run,’ car crash on January 3.
He was transported to a hospital where he suffered from a medical episode and died four-and-a-half hours later. His cause of death has not be established and a preliminary toxicology report found cocaine metabolite and cannabinoids in his system.
Now the LAPD’s actions are the subject of an internal investigation as LAPD Chief Michel Moore said data from the Taser weapon showed there were six separate activations over 42 seconds.
The chief said that the first two activations of the Taser, which was fired from afar, ‘weren’t effective’ on Anderson and that the stun gun was then directly applied to the man’s skin four times over a period of 33 seconds, The Los Angeles Times reported.
Officers repeatedly issued instructions to Anderson that he declined to follow. He was warned he would be tased if he did not physically comply with their instructions to turn over
Anderson cries out, ‘Please, help me please’
BLM co-founder Patrisse Cullors’ cousin (pictured) was tasered six times in 42 seconds as other officers tried to pin and handcuff him on a California street as he yelled, ‘help me please,’ before he died in the hospital hours later
Moore said the first two activations were in probe mode where darts are fired from the taser into the individual, causing neuromuscular disruption. This action will put the person in an uncontrolled fall which leads to a secondary impact when they hit the floor, or ground.
Anderson’s death has raised concerns by Mayor Karen Bass, and a number of community activist on whether the officers tactics were too excessive.
Former police officer Seth Stoughton, now a University of South Carolina law professor and use-of-force expert who reviewed the LAPD body-cam videos, told the New York Times: ‘Just because he is actively resisting, that doesn’t mean he is a threat.
‘He is not a threat of harm to the officers. The only threat is a delay. It doesn’t appear to me the officers believe the Taser protects them from harm.’
After the incident, the LAPD released edited bodycam video of the incident showing viewers the events that led up to Anderson’s arrest.
Anderson, a high school English teacher at a public charter school in Washington, DC and leaves behind a five-year-old son.
He is also the cousin of Black Lives Matter co-founder, Patrisse Cullors. He was in Los Angeles visiting family before the deadly incident took place.
‘As I watched the video, what was clear to me is that my cousin, Keenan, was actually really scared and he was asking for help repeatedly and unfortunately that’s not what he received from LAPD,’ Cullors told the Los Angeles Times.
‘At that point the question becomes why wasn’t there [help]?
‘Why wasn’t my cousin offered medical attention?’ she asked. ‘Why wasn’t there an ambulance or fire department called if he kept repeating that he needed help, that he needed support?’
Cullors told the news outlet that before watching the body camera footage she said that she and her family were trying to figure out what actually took place.
‘What we do know is that Keenan was alive before his experience with the police and then he was dead. But we don’t want to continue with the narrative of what the police were saying because we don’t know if that’s true,’ she said.
The Taser used by the LAPD is a brand of stun gun that is manufactured by Axon Enterprise, formerly Taser International. Officers from the department has used this form of Taser before, along with other so-called less lethal weapons, the news outlet reported.
The Taser used by the LAPD is a brand of stun gun that is manufactured by Axon Enterprise, formerly Taser International. Officers from the department has used this form of Taser before, along with other so-called less lethal weapons, the news outlet reported
Community leaders in Los Angeles held a rally calling for policy change and justice for Anderson in Los Angeles on Wednesday.
‘There has to be a policy around lasers because less lethal doesn’t mean non-lethal,’ BLMLA co-founder Melina Abdullah said.
‘We also have to stop the character assassination that happens with this edited narrative of this release of this bodycam footage. We want the unedited footage now!’
Many law enforcement experts who reviewed the videos claimed the repeated force used by officers from the LAPD appeared ‘excessive’ and ‘haphazard’ given Anderson’s actions, the news outlet reported.
Ed Obayashi, a Northern California deputy and a top state advisor on police tactics told the Los Angeles Times that ‘it is going to be hard to convince any judge that these officers were using reasonable force.’
‘From the visual aspect, it looks like he is not fighting back; he is not threatening the officers. He is saying I am not resisting … and what could be considered resisting is an automatic reflex of the body to the pain application from the Taser,’ he said.
Kelly Muniz LAPD Police Captain III and Commanding Officer of the Media Relations Division spoke during the critical incident community briefing providing details about the arrest of Anderson, classified as an in-custody death. She also and stated the Force Investigation Division will conduct an investigation.
According to officials, the January 3 incident began around 3:38pm when a West Traffic Division motor officer was flagged down for a traffic collision in the area of Venice Boulevard and Lincoln Boulevard in Pacific Area.
Muniz said the officer observed a male, who was later identified as Keenan Anderson, running in the middle of the street and exhibiting erratic behavior.
LAPD Police Captain III and PIO Kelly Muniz (pictured) speaks during the critical incident community briefing on January 3
Several citizens involved in the traffic collision motioned to Anderson, indicating that he caused the accident.
The officer contacted Anderson, spoke with him and requested additional units for a DUI investigation.
Anderson initially followed the officer’s commands and sat at the northeast corner of Venice and Lincoln Boulevard for several minutes as the officer spoke with him.
As additional units arrived at scene, Anderson suddenly attempted to flee the location. Officers gave chase as Anderson ran eastbound in the middle of the street on Venice Boulevard. As officers contacted Anderson, he began to resist, resulting in a use of force.
Officers struggled with Anderson for several minutes, utilizing a TASER, bodyweight, firm grips, and joint locks to overcome his resistance. Anderson was subsequently handcuffed and hobbled at the ankles.
Shortly after Anderson was taken into custody, Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) personnel responded to the scene and rendered medical aid for deployment of the TASER.
Anderson was transported via a rescue ambulance (RA) to a local hospital in the City of Santa Monica. While at the hospital, Anderson went into cardiac arrest and was pronounced deceased.
One officer received minor abrasions to his hands during the use of force. Detectives from Force Investigation Division responded to the scene and are investigating this incident.
In the aftermath of his death, BLM Co-Founder Patrisse Cullors took to instagram to mourn the passing of her cousin and blame the LAPD for his death
But, the video shows Anderson becoming distraught and fearful as he is being restrained on the ground.
‘They’re trying to George Floyd me,’ he yells out, referencing George Floyd, the Minneapolis man killed by police when he was held down when an officer knelt on Floyd’s neck while he was pinned to the ground for nine minutes and 29 seconds
During the incident, Anderson was eventually handcuffed and hobbled at his ankles before he was transported to a local hospital where he died hours later.
Walter Katz, a former independent police auditor in California and Chicago, said the coroner will be the one to determine the role the taser played in Anderson’s death. But, Katz also pointed out that it also doesn’t mean the officer’s actions were appropriate.
He said the incident begins to go awry when the officer with the taser tells Anderson to turn on his stomach and to stop resisting. He also said the officer used the taser on Anderson’s body repeatedly without really giving Anderson a chance to gather himself.
Katz said it should have been clear by that point that Anderson’s behavior suggested he was somehow impaired, and said ‘it was a poor decision,’ for officers ‘to do more tasering.
He added: ‘This officer went down the path of this is the tool I am going to use.’
Moore said under the LAPD policy, ‘there is no preset limit on 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.
He claimed that Anderson had been in an altered state and resisted officers’ efforts to detain him. He also said one of the officers ‘elbow appears to be along the collar bone and may have touched the neck or not, but I hear, ‘ Partner your elbow.’
Moore continued to point out that there was no evidence that shows Anderson’s airways being compromised, the news outlet reported.
Officers from the LAPD surround Anderson on the middle of the California roadway
Citizens in the background of the arrest recorded the incident and spoke among themselves about the traffic incident that had occurred beforehand. One man said Anderson had attempted to steal his car before the police arrived
Anderson repeatedly refused to cooperate with police instruction after causing a traffic incident in Los Angeles. The lengthy confrontation ultimately led to him being tasered
Anderson pleading with officers, ‘Please don’t do this sir’ as they proceed to restrain him
Anderson cries out ‘help, help,’ that is seen in the bodycam video appearing distraught
Anderson telling officers, ‘I’m not resisting,’ as an officer is pointing the taser into his back as he is lying facing down to the ground
The officer is about to discharge the taser as Anderson says, ‘Stop it’
The taser appears to be discharged as Anderson says, ‘Okay’
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