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Deadly Force

December 28, 2008 | Jack Leonard and Victoria Kim
One summer evening in 2005, an Inglewood police officer stood with his gun aimed at a schizophrenic man who had been stopped for drinking beer in public. The officer ordered Jule Dexter to put his hands on the hood of the police car, but Dexter's baggy pants started slipping. "Please let me pull my pants up," Dexter pleaded, according to a witness' sworn testimony. "Don't move!" the officer yelled. But Dexter, 27, reached to pull up his pants, witnesses said.
December 24, 2008 | Raja Abdulrahim
Two men who police shot at in May, leaving their 19-year-old friend dead, are suing the city for assault, battery and negligent hiring, training and supervision. On May 11, Craig Brown and Gregg Whiting were in a Lincoln that was stopped in the street when a police car pulled up and blocked their path, and two officers began shooting unprovoked in their direction, according to the lawsuit. They were arrested and taken to jail, where they learned that one of their friends in another vehicle, Michael Byoune, had been shot and killed and that another friend was injured, according to the lawsuit.
September 10, 2008 | Ari B. Bloomekatz, Times Staff Writer
Inglewood residents turned out to protest at a City Council meeting Tuesday night about four fatal officer-involved shootings that have occurred since May. "To me it's a big issue when there's police shootings going on," Rodrigo Vazquez, 24, told the council as demonstrators passed out fliers that read "Stop killer cops." The council, which discussed the shootings in closed session, convened a day after the vice-chairman of the Inglewood Citizen Police Oversight Commission, who has been one of the department's harshest critics, announced that he was taking a leave of absence from the watchdog panel.
December 30, 2007 | Laura King, Times Staff Writer
President Pervez Musharraf on Saturday expressed determination to restore law and order after the country was racked by a third day of riots and looting that have killed dozens of people since the assassination of Benazir Bhutto. Officials said at least 44 people had been killed in unrest that broke out Thursday night after the former prime minister was killed as she left a campaign rally.
June 20, 2007 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
The district attorney Tuesday cleared two San Diego police officers of criminal liability in the fatal shooting of a 17-year-old Mexican national during a late-night traffic stop Feb. 10. Dist. Atty. Bonnie Dumanis said that Officers Jack Pearson and Paul Galante were within their rights to use deadly force when it appeared to them that Noe Rojas-Godinez was trying to run them over. The two said they believed Rojas-Godinez was reaching for a gun. The gun turned out to be a toy.
May 1, 2007 | David G. Savage, Times Staff Writer
The Supreme Court ruled Monday that police may use deadly force to stop a speeding motorist who ignores warnings and poses a danger to the public. In an 8-1 decision, the justices threw out a lawsuit brought by a Georgia teenager who was paralyzed after a police cruiser rammed the back of his car and sent it careening off the road. The teenager had sped away from police and led them on a high-speed chase down narrow two-lane roads.
February 18, 2007 | Lianne Hart, Times Staff Writer
In a "shoot first, ask questions later" approach to personal safety, state lawmakers are weighing a bill that would give Texans the right to use deadly force as a first resort when they feel their safety is threatened. The measure, which is in committee, is an early hit at the statehouse: Twenty-seven of 31 state senators have signed on as co-sponsors. In the House, 100 of 150 members support the bill.
December 14, 2006 | From Times Staff Reports
The officer who shot a teenager in the leg after mistaking a toy gun for a real weapon was justified in using deadly force, the San Bernardino County district attorney's office said Wednesday. On July 25, Ontario police responded to a call about four teens running around with guns near an Ontario Kmart shortly before 9 p.m.
September 4, 2006 | Garrett Therolf, Times Staff Writer
The police officer was still trying to load pepper spray bullets into the gun when the young woman, a knife firmly in hand, made a sudden move that police took to be a lunge in their direction. Time had run out. Two other officers fired at the dark-haired woman, striking her in the chest, the part of the body that law enforcement regulations suggest police aim for in a life-threatening encounter. She crumpled to the grass and died a short time later.
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