L.A. Police Shoot, Critically Wound Unarmed Man for Having his Arm Wrapped in a Towel

L.A. Police Shoot, Critically Wound Unarmed Man for Having his Arm Wrapped in a Towel

L.A. Police Shoot, Critically Wound Unarmed Man for Having his Arm Wrapped in a Towel

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June 20 2015 1:05 PM

L.A. Police Shoot, Critically Wound Unarmed Man for Having his Arm Wrapped in a Towel

lapd
Screengrab from video showing LAPD officers handcuffing critically injured unarmed man.

Via Twitter.com/realfatdaddy

Los Angeles police shot a man after he raised an arm wrapped in a towel, which officers apparently feared was a weapon. “Police said officers thought the man had a gun but turned out to be unarmed,” reports the Los Angeles Times. The unidentified man apparently waved down a patrol car yesterday afternoon. “This person extended an arm wrapped in a towel. The officer exited the vehicle and said, 'Drop the gun, drop the gun,'” LAPD Lt. John Jenal said. And that is when at least one officer opened fire.

A witness who was passing by filmed the officers after the shooting showing how they apparently thought their first priority was to handcuff a man who has a clearly serious head injury.

Daniel Politi has been contributing to Slate since 2004 and wrote the Today’s Papers column from 2006 to 2009. Follow him on Twitter.