LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com)LAPD Chief Charlie Beck and Mayor Eric Garcetti have reiterated their promise to release the autopsy report in the police shooting death of Ezell Ford before the end of the year.

With less than three weeks until the deadline, Beck said at a news conference Monday he and the mayor are “still committed” to making the report public.

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“I don’t think we’ll have to wait until New Year’s Eve but we’re not going to be more specific,” Garcetti added.

Ford, whose family says was mentally ill and unarmed, was shot to death in August after the LAPD says he struggled with officers and reached for one of their weapons. Witnesses have disputed that account.

The LAPD has put an administrative hold on Ford’s autopsy, arguing they wanted witnesses to come forward before its release

Ford family attorney Steve Lerman accuses city leaders of stone-walling in their civil rights lawsuit against the LAPD.

“Garbage. It doesn’t fly. Maybe in the immediate aftermath of the shooting, when it wasn’t known that there were witnesses,” Lerman said. “The facade of legitimacy has now evaporated. There is absolutely no reason not to release it except for some political expediency.”

Community activists are also growing impatient. There have been several protests against the shooting death of Ford.

Earl Ofari Hutchinson, president of the Urban Policy Roundtable, points out police in other controversial shootings around the nation released autopsy reports in days if not weeks.

“If you delay it, it just simply raises suspicions it’s a cover-up,” Hutchinson said.

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Chief Beck has denied any ulterior motives and insists the LAPD is being transparent.

“The release autopsy is just a sign post on the way to the destination. Initially the autopsy will not be [conclusive]. It is not the end of the investigation,” Beck said.


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