LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Inquests have been ordered into the deaths of three men who were shot to death by Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies.
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to direct the coroner's office to conduct the inquests into the fatal shootings, all of which happened in 2020. The deaths of 47-year-old Dana "Malik" Young Jr., 41-year-old Samuel Herrera Jr., and 29-year-old Dijon Kizzee were all ruled to be homicides.
The death of Kizzee, in particular, angered the South LA community and led to several days of protests, some of which turned violent. Kizzee was riding a bicycle last September when deputies tried to stop him for a code violation. Sheriff's officials say he ran from the deputies, who opened fire after they saw a firearm during a struggle.
A review by the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office is now underway to determine whether each shooting amounted to a lawful use of force.
The motion recommending the inquests were co-authored by Supervisors Hilda Solis and Holly Mitchell.
"We do not know what happened during the course of these investigations and how they were conducted," Mitchell said. "The Office of Inspector General was not allowed to monitor every step ... and so concerns remain about their integrity given the lack of true, comprehensive, independent oversight."
LA County Sheriff Alex Villanueva lashed out at the inquests as a political attack and accused the supervisors of "trying to sell the idea that somehow (these men) were unjustly murdered by sheriff's deputies."
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