Prosecutors in Los Angeles, California have decided not to file charges against the officer that needlessly shot an unarmed homeless man in 2015, even though the police chief recommended he be charged for his crime.
Despite video showing the killing, prosecutors claim they are unable to prove Officer Clifford Proctor acted unlawfully when he killed Brendon Glenn by shooting him in the back 2 times in Venice, reported The Sacramento Bee.
“We have concluded that there’s insufficient evidence to overcome a claim at trial by Officer Proctor that he did that in defense of his partner or himself,” Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey said.
Glenn, 29, can be seen on his stomach, trying to push himself up when Proctor decided to shoot him in the back.
According to police, Glenn wasn’t trying to take a gun from Proctor or his partner when he was shot, and Proctor’s partner told investigators that he didn’t know why the officer chose to shoot him.
Police Chief Charlie Beck even recommended prosecutors charge Proctor for his crime.
A civilian oversight panel also decided the officer violated department policy when he shot the unarmed man in the back.
V. James DeSimone, an attorney for Glenn’s family, described Lacey’s decision as “spineless,” adding that it is a conflict of interest when prosecutors have to decide whether or not to charge criminal officers.
“Officer Proctor did not act to deescalate the situation,” DeSimone said in a statement. “This tragic death could have been avoided with common sense policing.”
The slaying resulted in angry protests in LA, with activists protesting multiple times outside Lacey’s office. The activists say the office hasn’t prosecuted an on-duty officer for a fatal shooting in more than a decade, according to The Sac Bee.
A police report said Proctor told investigators he saw Glenn’s hand on his partner’s holster and thought he was trying to grab the other officer’s gun. This is an obvious lie, because the video doesn’t show it and his partner, Jonathan Kawahara, said he did not know why Proctor shot Glenn, adding that he did not see Glenn’s hand near his gun.
Regardless of Kawahara’s statement and the video showing that Proctor is lying and had no reason to fear for his safety, he simply claimed he feared for his and his partner’s life, so he will not be held accountable for killing an unarmed person.
Proctor resigned from the LAPD in 2017, and yaxpayers had to pay $4 million for the city to settle a wrongful death lawsuit brought by Glenn’s family.