Two officers who dumped 18 rounds into a hostage to 'save her life' have been found in violation of the department's policy, but have not been fired.
'Los Angeles, CA — Los Angeles police previously released graphic body camera footage, showing officers opening fire on a man armed with a knife who’d taken a 49-year-old woman hostage. In the shooting, police killed both the man with the knife, and the innocent hostage. Now, the department is claiming that the officers who opened fire on the innocent women are being “disciplined.” However, they will face no criminal charges and will likely not even be fired.
On Tuesday, a civilian oversight panel ruled that two of the three cops who responded to the scene that day violated department policy on the use of deadly force. It will now be up to LAPD Chief Michel Moore to decide exactly what “discipline” measures he will take with the officers.
The LAPD identified the officers who responded to the Van Nuys hostage situation as Eugene Damiano, Andrew Trock and Cristian Bonilla but they made no mention of who was found in violation.
According to a 911 recording, officers were called to the scene on June 16, 2018, after a woman reported that a man had stabbed someone at her location. When officers arrived, they found Guillermo Perez, 32, who had just stabbed his ex-girlfriend with a knife.
According to police, Perez had a violent past and was recently released from prison after being convicted of robbery, assault with a deadly weapon, and domestic violence. Meanwhile, thousands of non-violent drug offenders remain in cages.
When officers confronted Perez, he held a chair as a shield and a large knife. As officers yelled for Perez to drop the knife, he did not comply.
At this point, officers opened fire on Perez with bean bag rounds, according to Moore. However, the chair shielded him from the blasts.
“He moved away from officers and grabbed an innocent bystander who was standing nearby. Perez began to cut the innocent bystander’s throat with a knife. That’s when three officers shot at Perez to stop his actions and prevent him from killing the hostage,” the chief said.
When Perez grabbed the innocent bystander, 49-year-old Elizabeth Tollison as a hostage, officers unleashed a torrent of gunfire. In total, officers fired 18 rounds, several of which struck Tollison, killing her.'
Read more: Video Shows Cops Respond to Hostage Situation by Killing the Hostage—No One Fired