Claim failure to adequately serve Black community
The Los Angeles chapter of Black Lives Matter and family members of people killed by the Los Angeles Police Department are calling for the removal of Police Chief Michel Moore for what they termed his lack of leadership and failure to serve the city’s Black community.
“We are here because our community continues to be abused,’’ Pastor Stephen “Cue’’ Jn-Marie of The Row Church said during a Tuesday news conference outside LAPD headquarters downtown, on the day of the city’s Police Commission meeting. “We have family, after family, after family–we’ve been coming to this commission since 2015, and some of us even before that.’’
Melina Abdullah, co-founder of BLM LA, said in a blunt message: “We’re here today to call on Michel Moore’s removal.’’ She added that the LAPD does everything from “stealing debit cards to stealing lives.’’
Abdullah said that so far this year, the LAPD has shot 27 people and at least 17 have died, though Moore gave slightly different numbers at the commission meeting.
Moore did not respond to the protesters’ call for his firing at the meeting, but he did update the commission on police shooting numbers.
“Year to date, we’ve now had 25 officer-involved shootings. The number last year was 27,’’ he said. “Our fatal officer-involved shootings are at 13 this year. Last year, that number was 13 as well. And our four-year average is just over nine.’’
Abdullah mentioned that the sister of James Mincey, who died at the hands of the LAPD in 1982, was standing among them. “We’re here today because the stolen lives have to stop. The killing of Black people and killing of Angelenos at the hands of police has to stop,’’ Abdullah said.
Abdullah said Moore is “causing great pain and harm’’ to the city. She noted that BLM-LA tried multiple times to remove Moore when Eric Garcetti was mayor, and tried asking Bass to let Moore’s term expire.
“We’re now saying we can’t let another day go by, another life be stolen, without rising up as a city and saying Moore must go. No more Moore,’’ Abdullah said.
Paula Minor, a member of BLM-LA, emphasized that LAPD’s statistics report most officer-involved shootings involve people who are experiencing a mental health crisis. She also said the LAPD has a de-escalation policy but officers do not always follow the policy, and cited poor management.
“No CEO of a corporation of that size that has that many examples of mismanagement or examples of irresponsibility would be allowed to remain in that position,’’ Minor said. “We disagree with the amount of money the LAPD has, but if they have that, it needs to be managed correctly, efficiently, according to the procedures and to reduce the number of killings to get to the root of corruption.’’