On December 13, the Los Angeles Country Sheriff’s Department released photos and video to suggest that the suspect shot and killed by deputies in Lynwood on Saturday had a gun and continued to point it even after being shot and falling to the ground.
Videos also show that the man, Nicholas Robertson, appeared to be armed.
According to KTLA 5, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LACSD) began receiving calls about Robertson around “10:53 a.m.” He was reported “in the area of Long Beach Boulevard and Magnolia Avenue,” with some callers simply saying he armed and others saying he was firing shots into the air.
Patron’s at Chico’s Pizza Parlor said Robertson allegedly entered with the gun and appeared “angry,” but did not try “to rob the business.” When he walked out of the restaurant two LACSD deputies were waiting and ordered him to “drop the weapon.” But LACSD Capt. Steven Katz said Robertson repeatedly refused to put the gun down.
Katz said, “The suspect presented a threat to the deputies and to the community,” so the deputies opened fire. Robertson was pronounced dead at the scene and “a .45-caliber semiautomatic handgun was located at the scene” under Robertson’s body.
The Lynwood shooting has already sparked outrage from Black Lives Matter activists and the broader community as the latest death of a black man at police hands–this time, a father with children. It was unclear why he was armed or what he was doing.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Juan Roberto observed the shooting from inside Chico’s Pizza Parlor and said, “Then I saw [Robertston] crawling. He was still holding the gun and he still wouldn’t let it go.”
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.