The family of Keenan Anderson, the 31-year-old high school teacher and father who was tased repeatedly by Los Angeles police officers before he died has filed a $100 million wrongful death lawsuit against the city.
Of course, the cops have been defending themselves since the January killing and subsequent $50 million wrongful death suit initially filed by the family, which was ultimately dismissed, according to ABC 7. And since an autopsy report revealed that drugs were involved in Anderson’s death, that’s not likely to change.
(Not that it changes the fact that he didn’t die until after he was tased for roughly 30 seconds straight then again for at least five more seconds.)
USA Today reports that an autopsy released earlier this month found Anderson, 31, died from an enlarged heart and cocaine use, and his death was “determined hours after restraint and conducted energy device use.”
Drake Madison, a spokesperson for the LAPD, told USA Today the department does not comment on pending litigation. But famed civil rights attorney Ben Crump said Monday what killed Anderson “was an overdose of excessive force.”
“Had he not been tased,” Crump said. “Keenan Anderson would be here today.”
The publication adds that the lawsuit which was given to them by family attorneys, was filed on behalf of Anderson’s 5-year-old son, Syncere Kai Anderson, and the child’s mother, Gabrielle Hansell.
It alleges civil rights violations, assault and battery, false imprisonment, and negligence against the city and dozens of unnamed individuals who was “targeted because of his race” despite not posing a threat.
As previously reported, Anderson, a cousin of Black Lives Matter Global Network co-founder Patrisse Cullors, pleaded with officers to stop harming him and literally predicted his own death shortly before his prediction became a reality.
“They’re trying to George Floyd me,” he said.
At the end of the day, police officers treated a Black man who was clearly in need of help—whether he was on drugs or experiencing a mental health crisis or both—like he was a dangerous criminal, and they used his “erratic” behavior to justify it, which is typical of police officers when they need to explain why deadly force against an unarmed person was absolutely necessary.
“It matters not whether there was cocaine in his system because the actions of the officers were wrong,” L.A. attorney Carl Douglas said during a press conference Monday, echoing Crump, who said, “What killed him was an overdose of excessive force.”
Still, the police, who claim Anderson committed a felony hit-and-run by running through traffic after trying to get into another person’s car, maintain that tasing their suspect relentlessly was their only recourse.
“Minor auto accidents are usually handled with an exchange of information between the drivers and a call to one’s insurance carrier,” a rep for the Los Angeles Police Protective League said, according to ABC 7. “On the other hand, when an individual who is high on cocaine is in an accident, tries to open the car door of an innocent driver, and then flees the scene by running into traffic, police officers must act.”
And by “act,” they mean, “kill a man who posed no lethal threat,” apparently.
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