Inglewood police shoot, kill man at birthday party

Posted on May 18, 2009. Filed under: California, shot by police |

Inglewood, CA – Inglewood police shot and killed a man who allegedly brandished a weapon early Sunday while officers were attempting to break up a birthday party, authorities said.

Police said officers responded to reports of a fight shortly after 12:45 a.m. in the 800 block of South Osage Avenue. Officers opened fire on Marcus Smith, 31, of Compton after he pointed a semiautomatic handgun at them, Lt. Mike McBride said.”

He had it in his hand. He drew it and pointed it in the direction of the officers,” McBride said. “So I would say that’s threatening the officers.”

One officer was shot in the right leg in the incident. He was taken to a hospital, treated and released, McBride said. Police suspect the officer was shot by Smith, but they need to conduct more tests on his gun to be sure, he said.

A woman who identified herself as Smith’s fiancee said she did not see him brandish a weapon. Kalonna LaCount said she and Smith were leaving the party together after police called on guests to disperse. LaCount said she and Smith were walking down a stairway when Smith slipped. LaCount said she then saw Smith’s body jerk as police fired their weapons.
“He had his hands in the air,” she said. “The more he stumbled, the more they shot.”

The Inglewood Police Department is under investigation by the Justice Department and the Los Angeles County Office of Independent Review over incidents in which officers have been accused of using excessive force. More on LA Times

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