Deputies arrested 12 protesters during a demonstration at the South Los Angeles Sheriff’s Station to protest the fatal shooting of Dijon Kizzee by deputies in the Westmont area, authorities said Monday.
The 12 were arrested on suspicion of failing to leave an unlawful assembly, said Deputy Trina Schrader of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Information Bureau.
Two of the 12 were juveniles and were released to their parents, Schrader said.
“The other 10 were booked and will remain in custody, until they go to Inglewood court Wednesday morning or get bailed out,” she said.
A conviction on that charge is a misdemeanor that carries a potential penalty of up to six months in jail and a fine up to $1,000.
According to @desertborder’s tweets, an unlawful assembly was declared at about 10 p.m.
“They were throwing chunks of concrete, bricks and rocks at deputies,” said Deputy Morgan Arteaga of the Sheriff’s Information Bureau. Protesters wearing helmets and carrying shields also launched mortars at the deputies, she said. No injuries or property damage was reported.
Mari Matsuoka of the Revolution Club of Los Angeles said those arrested Sunday night should be released. “This is an outrage. They were charged with `failure to disperse,’ a citation. “This is clearly politically motivated punishment.”
“To those protesting at South LA Sheriff’s Station: We support the community wanting to protest, to peacefully exercise their 1st Amendment rights. However, we are concerned there are individuals from outside of the community, and state, wanting to incite riots,” the sheriff’s department tweeted. “Those individuals have already committed acts of vandalism, looting and assaults utilizing rocks, pipes and mortars. Everyone’s public safety is our priority. If you are in the area, please be aware of your surroundings so that you are not hurt by those inciting violence.”
Sunday’s demonstration was scheduled for 8:30 p.m. A participant known as @desertborder tweeted that 50 people were on the sidewalk across from the sheriff’s station when he arrived at 1310 W. Imperial Highway.
A similar demonstration at the same location the previous night was declared an unlawful assembly at 8:43 p.m. Saturday. At around 6 p.m. Saturday the crowd headed toward the Harbor (110) Freeway, blocking all northbound lanes up from 6:30 p.m. for about an hour, facing off with California Highway Patrol officers.
No arrests were made Saturday, according to a LASD official.
Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva went to the South L.A. sherrif’s station Monday evening, where a third night of protests was expected. He told reporters there that they made 13 arrests Sunday night, many of which he says were out-of-state agitators looking to incite a riot after pipes and bottles thrown.
Villanueva said the LASD will not allow any protesters near their station and that any agitators looking to start violence will see a swift response from deputies. Streets are all blocked off in the area and multiple specialized Sheriff’s Response Teams were mobilizing near the station, he said.
Kizzee was fatally shot Aug. 31 during a confrontation with deputies near West 109th Place and South Budlong Avenue.
Sheriff’s officials said he was riding a bicycle in the area and deputies stopped him for an unspecified vehicle code violation. After he was stopped, he allegedly tried to run away.
“Our suspect was holding some items of clothing in his hands, punched one of the officers in the face and dropped the items in his hands,” Lt. Brandon Dean said.
“The deputies noticed that inside the clothing items that he dropped was a black, semiautomatic handgun, at which time, a deputy-involved-shooting occurred.”
The sheriff’s department alleged that Kizzee “made a motion toward the firearm,” while community activists have accused deputies of fatally shooting an unarmed man.
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