LOS ANGELES (CBSLA/AP) — LAPD Chief Charlie Beck says a 16-year-old boy who was fatally shot by police in South Los Angeles on Sunday was apparently intent on committing suicide.
Beck says Thursday that Daniel Enrique Perez had called 911 Sunday to report a man with a gun in South Los Angeles and had left a farewell note to his parents.
Based on evidence that included a “farewell note” Perez left to his family, along with the 911 call and Perez’s prior history according to family members, Beck said all indications pointed to a “desire to end his own life.”
However, hours later, the teen’s parents and protesters marched to LAPD’s Newton Division to call for justice.
His mother Veronica Perez said their son was unjustly killed. She said Daniel was a quiet, kind and loving boy. Through a translator.
CBSLA’s Rachel Kim asked for her reaction to Chief Beck saying her son wanted to end his own life.
“She’s saying that the police did not tell her that,” Translator Alfredo Gama said. “The police did not tell her that Daniel called to die at the hands of police, that she doesn’t even believe that Daniel called, that is still a question.”
“We are deeply saddened by these events, and my heart goes out to his family as well as to the officer involved in this shooting,” said Beck. “The officer involved in this shooting is devastated, as you can well imagine.”
Police have said officers sent to the area spotted a person matching the suspect’s description and when they approached he pointed a gun at them.
Earlier this week, Beck said that as officers approached Perez, he “turned and pointed a handgun at the officers, at which time there was an officer-involved shooting.”
The weapon turned out to be a replica with an orange tip that was painted black.
Beck viewed the video footage from body cameras worn by the officers at the time of the shooting and said the footage “clearly supports the officers’ prior statements and versions of this incident, and it clearly refutes any reports that this individual … was shot while he was laying on the ground.
“That did not happen,” he added.
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