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To Protect and to Serve? LA Police Brutally Beat, Kill Homeless Man

© East News / AP/FOTOLINKPolice shooting
Police shooting - Sputnik International
A shocking video emerged apparently showing police officers firing several shots at a man after trying to subdue him, bringing the issue of police brutality back into the spotlight.

A shocking video emerged on Facebook apparently showing police officers shooting and killing a man, known only as Africa, in downtown Los Angeles in broad daylight. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The incident, filmed by an onlooker, took place on Skid Row outside the Union Rescue Mission, a homeless shelter.

The police responded to a 911 call about a possible robbery. The suspect started fighting when the officers tried to arrest him, LAPD said. One of the policemen used a Taser on the man but it proved ineffective.

The shooting took place when the man alleged reached for an officer’s service weapon and a struggle ensued.

Los Angeles police Commander Andrew Smith said that a "thorough and complete" investigation would be conducted into the circumstances of the incident, seen by some as yet another example of excessive use of deadly force by the police. The officers, involved in the incident, were placed on administrative leave.

The incident sparked backlash on social media.

A group of activists held a vigil in downtown Los Angeles following the shooting.

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