Shot on Aug. 31, 2020 in South Los Angeles, California
Dijon Kizzee, a Black man, was stopped by LA County sheriff’s deputies on Aug. 31, 2020 for “vehicle code violations” while he was riding his bicycle. Kizzee dropped his bicycle and ran from the police, carrying some clothing. They lost sight of him. One report said he tried to get a friend to drive him away from the area. When the police caught up to him, the police said he punched one of them, and some clothing fell out of his hands to the ground, revealing a semi-automatic pistol. The police said Kizzee “made a motion” as if to pick it up, so the two deputies shot him 15 to 20 times, continuing to shoot after he was on the ground. A witness who watched the events from across the street said, “I watched him go from living to dying to dead.” LA County deputies do not wear body cams.
Kizzee’s aunt asked an LA Times reporter, “How do you get a violation on a bicycle?” The county sheriff’s office later explained that bicycles have to follow the same laws as cars. Attorney Carl Douglas, who grew up in the neighborhood, told CNN, “You never see anybody in Beverly Hills or Santa Monica stopped for a code violation while riding a bike.”
Dijon Kizzee had cared for his mother until her death in 2011, and since then helped care for a younger nephew. Kizzee’s aunt stayed by his body for the hours he lay on the ground until the arrival of the coroner’s van.
On Tuesday, Sept. 1, funds were approved for the first time for the LA County Sheriff’s Department to buy body cams for its 5,200 officers on patrol, which will start next month.