Two weeks before a Ferguson, Missouri police officer shot and killed Michael Brown, 37-year-old Omar Abrego was beaten to death by Los Angeles police officers in the Newton district. That was the same district where — two days after Brown’s death — Ezell Ford also got shot and killed by police.
Abrego was driving home in an Amtrak truck wearing his uniform from work on August 2, when police stopped him in front of his home for allegedly speeding, driving erratically and nearly hitting a pedestrian.
Police say that he failed to stop when they attempted to pull him over, and that when he did stop he left his vehicle and began to run from them. Witnesses at the scene say otherwise: They assert that Abrego was cooperative, and that the police beat him while he was on the ground with fists and batons.
LAPD Cmdr. Andrew Smith told KTLA.
“As a result of that altercation…the suspect had a laceration and that’s one of the reasons they called the ambulance. After the vehicle stopped at 69th and Main, the suspect started to flee and the two supervisors caught the individual and an altercation ensued.”
But, one witness who says that he was there throughout the incident told reporters that the police beat Abrego for at least ten minutes before calling EMS personnel.
Another witness added:
“I witnessed the officer, the sergeant for LAPD, strike the individual twice in the face with his fist. Then officers arrived on the scene. I saw a lot of blood on the suspect’s face.”
According to the Los Angeles Times, Abrego who “suffered a severe concussion and multiple facial and body contusions” died in the hospital about 12 hours after the incident, in which one police officer injured his knee and another suffered a fractured hand.
Omar’s sister Yalelly Abrego told KTLA:
“It makes me feel angry because, police officers are supposed to try to protect us, not to harm or even kill.”
The families of both Ford and Abrego have retained attorneys and say that they intend to sue the LAPD.
Police beat and kill ANOTHER man…
Watch a report on the Abrego beating from KTLA below.