Police shooting of construction worker sparks protest in L.A.
Monday, September 06, 2021 10:12 PM

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LOS ANGELES, Sep. 6, 2010 (Xinhua News Agency) -- Dozens of people marched in downtown Los Angeles on Monday in protest against the fatal shooting by police of a construction worker one day earlier.

Using bullhorns as they chanted "assassination, assassination" in Spanish, the protesters gathered at the site of Sunday's shooting in which Los Angeles police officers shot and killed the man in a bustling shopping district.

The protesters marched back and forth between the shooting scene and a police station, about 10 minutes away from the scene where police shot dead Manuel Jamines, 37, a Guatemalan construction worker and father of three.

Jamines was allegedly threatening passers-by after getting drunk in downtown Los Angeles before he was shot.

He allegedly ignored orders by Los Angeles police bicycle officers to drop the knife and instead lunged at them, prompting one of the officers to shoot him, police said.

Protesters said Jamines was drunk but not dangerous, and the shooting was unjustified.

Police said there were fewer than 50 protesters, but television reports indicated that hundreds in the heavily Guatemalan neighborhood were upset about the shooting.

Protesters asked why police didn't use a non-lethal weapon to restrain the suspect.

Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) Lt. Andrew Neiman said, "when you're trying to stop a suspect or stop a deadly action, the purpose is to stop the threat as quickly as possible."

Police in riot gear monitored the protest and closed off a major street. They also went on modified tactical alert in case the demonstration turned violent.

As of 5 p.m. local time, no arrests had been made and no injuries were reported, said Officer Gregory Baek with the LAPD's Media Relations Section.

Neiman said investigators had found several witnesses who said they saw Jamines threatening people.

Jamines was familiar to neighborhood residents who described him as a "nuisance who was habitually drunk" and often walked around with a "glazed look" on his face, he said.

Area resident Kelly Flor, who identified herself as a community activist, told NBC4 that Jamines did not speak English.

"He could not speak English, so he could not understand what the officer was saying, and after that the officer proceeded in shooting him twice in the head," she said.

Neiman said there was already friction between neighborhood residents and Rampart station officers, who have been cracking down on "illegal street-vending."

"This investigation is going to be transparent," said LAPD Capt. Rigo Romero. "We take every force investigation very, very serious."

 

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