Since the beginning of the year, police have killed 343 people. That’s 343 people in 110 days.
Among the 37 people killed so far this month is 28-year-old Ethiopian immigrant, Zelalem Eshetu Ewnetu. I am sure readers of this space will not be shocked to hear that there are some serious questions surrounding the killing of young Mr. Ewnetu.
A 4.0 student in high school in Ethiopia, Zelalem came to the U.S. 8 years ago on a scholarship to the University of Idaho and graduated with honors in mechanical and nuclear engineering.
What we do know for sure is that Zelalem, who was an engineer employed by the California Public Utilities Commission, was sitting in his car in the early morning of 4/12/2017. The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department says that there was a reported burglary in the area to which they responded. In a sane world, nothing else about what went down that early morning makes any sense. But we are not living in a sane world and haven’t lived in one for a long long time, so events followed a very predictable pattern ending with an innocent young black man dead at the hands of those who swore to serve and protect
Police in the US Kill Citizens at Over 70 Times the Rate of Other First-World Nations
Conflicting Police Reports
The first report:According to police accounts, they smelt marijuana and asked Zelalem to exit his car. Police said Zelalem refused to exit his car and brandished a gun, at which point they shot him on the torso.
The problem with that version is that detectives themselves informed the family that the gun was found in the back seat of the car and there were bullet holes in the back windshield. There was no mention in the official police report of them firing shots in the back of the vehicle.
A man sitting in another vehicle was spotted nearby and the deputies contacted the man, Mendoza said.
“The driver exited the vehicle then he broke free from the deputy’s grasp. He went into the vehicle, retrieved a handgun and a deputy involved shooting occurred,” Mendoza said.
Both deputies opened fire on the man who was struck at least once in the upper body, Mendoza said.
Again, no mention of the shots to the rear of the vehicle.
The purpose of a police report is to provide an accurate written account of a police officer’s observations during the investigation of a criminal incident. A police report can only be written by the officer(s) involved in the investigation of an incident. Each officer who makes a report must swear to its accuracy by signing it.
So what really went down on that fateful morning? What really happened to Zelalem? Clearly, we cannot rely on the cops to give us an accurate account of why they decided to end another black man’s life. Somebody lied about what happened last Wednesday morning. We join Zelalem’s family, friends, and supporters in calling for a thorough investigation into the circumstances surrounding his death.