Los Angeles Shooting Deaths More Than Double 2020 Total as Victim Count Rises

Officers with the Los Angeles Police Department have shot 38 people, 18 of them fatally, so far in 2021, the Los Angeles Times reported. The figures were a dramatic increase compared to either of the last two years, with the number of fatal shootings more than double the total in 2020.

In all of 2020, L.A. police shot 27 people, seven of them fatally. The year before, police shot 26 people total and killed 12, the Times reported.

The 18th person to be fatally shot by L.A. police in 2021 died on Sunday, according to authorities. The shooting occurred after police were called to the Eagle Rock neighborhood of L.A. by the Los Angeles Fire Department for backup in dealing with a knife-wielding man.

When the officers arrived at about 6 p.m., the man exited a parked car, allegedly while still holding the knife. The LAPD’s Media Relations Division wrote in a series of Twitter posts that the man refused to heed officer commands to drop the knife.

He continued to approach an officer with the knife despite the police’s warning, and one or more of the officers opened fire on him, police said. He was taken to a hospital and pronounced dead.

Authorities have not yet released the man’s name.

L.A. police also fatally shot two other knife-wielding men in separate incidents on December 18, KTLA reported. The first man was allegedly involved in a domestic violence incident in Historic South-Central, the LAPD Media Relations Division wrote on Twitter.

When officers arrived at the apartment building that they had been called to, two of the officers opened fire. The man was struck and pronounced dead at the scene by the Los Angeles Fire Department, according to Detective Meghan Aguilar.

« Right now, we aren’t exactly sure what transpired between the suspect and the officers, » Aguilar said. « What we’ll do is we’ll be looking at body-worn video and, of course, interviewing those officers and any witnesses. »

The second man shot on December 18 was also fatally shot in Historic South-Central after police received reports that he was chasing and threatening people with a knife, KTLA reported. The man was still holding the knife when officers arrived and refused commands to drop the weapon, causing police to open fire first with less-lethal rounds and then firearms, Aguilar said.

Officers with the Los Angeles Police Department have shot 38 people, 18 of them fatally, so far in 2021, the Los Angeles Times reported. Above, Chief Michel Moore speaks after being sworn in as the LAPD’s 57th police chief on Thursday, June 28, 2018, in Los Angeles.
Richard Vogel/AP Photo

Sunday’s shooting comes just days after an LAPD officer fatally shot a 14-year-old girl Thursday when officers fired on an assault suspect and a bullet went through the wall and struck the girl as she was in a clothing store dressing room.

LAPD Chief Michel Moore promised to release video from the clothing store shooting Monday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

The 18th person to be fatally shot by L.A. police in 2021 died on Sunday, according to authorities. Above, police vehicles follow a hearse carrying a slain officer to the Evergreen Cemetery in Colorado Springs, Colorado, on December 4, 2015.
David Zalubowski/AP Photo
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