LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Mayor Eric Garcetti on Saturday addressed protester and police concerns following the report of the Police Commission into the shooting death of unarmed Ezell Ford in 2014.
CBS2’s Laurie Perez said protesters at a minimum wage rally took the opportunity to remind the mayor they want action and answers. (They held signs saying things like “Ezell Would Have Wanted A Living Wage.”)
Protesters have been pressing the mayor — actually following him and camping outside his Hancock Park home — to get his take on the commission’s finding.
The commission ruled that one officer was not justified in the shooting death of Ford, a mentally ill and unarmed man. Another officer was cleared and the commission found he acted within department guidelines.
Since the commission ruled Tuesday, protesters said they are worried LAPD Chief Charlie Beck will not punish the officer who was found to have acted outside police procedure.
The police officer’s union, meanwhile, had their own concerns. They said the ruling against the one officer made many fear of being judged in deadly confrontations.
Reporters Saturday asked the mayor where he came down — on the side of the protesters or police, or somewhere between.
“I think it’s so important for law enforcement officers to know that they are supported,” Garcetti said, “that we need re-engagement, not the disengagement and it’s critically important no matter what happens in one case, that we continue to strengthen the bonds between community and between police.”
They mayor said he has spoken with Chief Beack — specifically about the state of the city — and wanted to insure there is calm around the emotional case and the ruling.
Garcetti also said he planned to speak to the chief more extensively about the issue on Sunday.