City Council censures De León, Cedillo, Martinez after police clear out demonstrators in Zocalo, Los Angeles
The Los Angeles Police Department is facing a backlash following the release of body camera videos released on Wednesday that depict the LAPD’s heavy-handed response to a peaceful demonstration on the City of Los Angeles’s Zocalo beat on October 1st.
The videos are already causing outrage throughout the city with many calling for the use of additional force on the officers, especially after the release of the videos.
The videos show a violent struggle between L.A. Police Officer Robert Montoya and unarmed suspect Cedillo near downtown Los Angeles on October 1st. According to the police body camera video review board, Montoya hit Cedillo in the face with his baton before punching him in the throat, rendering him unconscious.
LAPD officials say that Montoya was attempting to de-escalate the situation when he struck Cedillo twice in the face.
“This officer took additional measures to mitigate the risk of injury to the suspect,” LAPD Deputy Chief Michel Moore said. “Because the suspect was already on the ground, the impact of the baton was less likely to cause him significant injury or death.”
Video shows the use of a stun gun on Cedillo. He did not suffer serious injury. However, Cedillo is alleged to have verbally and physically attacked Montoya as he and others had been standing peacefully.
Police body camera video shows him being struck by Montoya while he is on the ground.
Police also claim that Cedillo kicked Montoya’s leg and struck him with the baton after a struggle, while Cedillo had been lying on the ground.
He also was alleged to have kicked a second officer, Jose Barrera. Barrera also sustained a minor injury.
In response to the release of the video, many on the City Council have come out in opposition.
Councilman Mitch O’Farrell tweeted:
#LAPD body cams and dash cams should be turned over to the LA County District Attorney to review and determine whether the officers acted lawfully. This isn’t what police should be doing.