The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department released a video last week showing two of its deputies firing 34 rounds at an unarmed man in the parking lot of an apartment complex earlier this month, killing him.
So far, no criminal charges have been filed against either deputies.
Police claim they shot the unarmed father of three because the car he was driving was “used as a weapon.”
But the sheriff’s office own video shows the driver, 24-year-old Ryan Twyman, attempting to escape the deputies by driving around them — not run over them.
Deputies had been trying to arrest Twyman, who they allege was under investigation for felony gun possession, for several weeks.
After they encountered him, the incident turned tragic within a matter of 20 seconds.
Video from the incident on June 6 shows deputies firing 34 rounds at a white Kia as it backs out of a parking space, apparently attempting to avoid colliding with the deputies before they gun him down.
Twyman, who was struck multiple times, died from his wounds.
A passenger inside the vehicle was not struck.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s policy states deputies should not fire at a moving vehicle or its occupants unless a person inside the vehicle is “imminently threatening a department member or another person present with deadly force by means other than the moving vehicle.”
On Tuesday, attorneys Twyman’s remaining family members filed an excessive force claim for damages, claiming the men inside the car were unarmed and that deputies used excessive force by shooting at them.
The sheriff’s department says the vehicle was being used as a weapon but was sure to also say the investigation is in its early stages.
“Our understanding of the incident may change as additional evidence is collected, analyzed and reviewed,” Commander April Tardy says in the department’s video, seen above.
In April, gang investigators say they found guns at Twyman’s home, but Twyman was not present at the time the guns were found, Tardy said.
The sheriff’s office confirmed deputies fired 34 round and that neither Twman nor his passenger were armed, although it has not released the names of the two deputies seen killing Twman.
Captain Richard Shear of the sheriff’s department’s training bureau said department policy says deputies are trained to move out of the way of a moving vehicle rather than shooting at it.
“The vehicle should not be considered a weapon, unless it’s so obvious and a guy is just driving through a park and mowing people down, for example,” he told the Los Angeles Times.
The case will be reviewed by the district attorney’s office in order to determine if charges will be filed.
The Sheriff’s Department Internal Affairs Bureau will review video footage of the shooting to determine if it followed policy.
Watch full video of the shooting, along with the department’s version of events above.