LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Abdul Arian, the 19-year-old who was fatally shot at the end of a police pursuit on the 101 last week, died in a hail of bullets.
Police said Arian told a 911 dispatcher that he was carrying a weapon. His family doesn’t buy it. Arian was unarmed.
They spoke to KCAL9 and CBS2 reporter Amanda Burden and said they are seeking answers to the shooting as well as planning a protest.
Cousin Michelle Arian says, “I just wish I could have said bye to him. Hugged him one last time and said that I loved him so much.”
Arian’s sister Nelo concurs. “How can anyone do this to someone. I mean, it’s such a shock. My heart still doesn’t believe this happened to my brother.”
She also doesn’t believe police needed to fire what was reportedly as many as 90 rounds into her brother. “Why did they have to kill him? Why don’t you just shoot him in the leg? I just want to ask them. Why didn’t you shoot him in the leg and arrest him?”
Family friend Feriba Morris wants to know why Arian wasn’t taken into custody. “Murders, rapists, child molesters … they get justice. They get a trial. In this case, the cop was the juror, the judge and the executioner. Why?”
Police said they believed their safety was in jeopardy. Arian jumped out of his car and on at least two occasions appeared to be pointing something at officers. His uncle believes it was Arian’s cellphone.
Officials said during a pursuit, Arian told 911 dispatchers he had a gun. They also quoted him as saying, “I’ve been arrested before for possession of destructive devices. I’m not afraid of the cops. If they pull their guns, Im gonna have to pull my gun out on them.”
His sister says she won’t believe it until she hears his voice, herself, on the tape.
Cellphone or not, the family wants answers and an apology.
Michelle Arian says, “We want justice for my cousin. We want to know that it was a wrongful death. He didn’t have to go this way. No one has to go this way.”