Originally published on June 30, 2015, at NationofChange.org
Several law enforcement organizations filed court documents last week seeking to suppress videos that recorded officers killing an unarmed innocent man and shooting his friend in the back. Attorneys for the police believe the officers should not be held accountable for their mistake and are fighting to bar the release of the videos. Although the district attorney claims that the victim appeared to be reaching for a weapon, multiple witnesses and an attorney for the victims’ families, who watched the videos, contradict the official narrative.
After his shift at a local restaurant ended on the evening of June 1, 2013, Ricardo Diaz-Zeferino joined his friends and his brother at Mis Amigos Bar in Gardena, California. Sometime after midnight, Diaz-Zeferino’s brother, Augustin de Jesus Reynoso, walked across the street with his bicycle to buy a lottery ticket at a CVS store. As he exited the CVS, Reynoso realized that his bike had been stolen.
A CVS employee called 911 reporting that Reynoso’s bicycle had been stolen. Although the caller told the dispatcher that he didn’t think the thief was armed, the 911 dispatcher did not relate this information to the officers responding to the theft. According to Gardena police Lt. Steve Prendergast, the theft report was misinterpreted as a robbery with unknown weapons involved.