LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said Friday that it is investigating after a deputy drew a gun and threatened to shoot the driver of a parked car on New Year’s Eve.
The driver was handcuffed and placed in a patrol car but not arrested. He was eventually cited for a missing license plate and released.
Deputies stopped the man at 5:45 p.m. in an unincorporated area of South Los Angeles, the Sheriff’s Department said in a statement.
Video released by the department from the deputy’s body camera shows the driver sitting in the car with the door open and another deputy next to him. The deputy with the body camera walks over.
When the driver fails to get out of the car, that deputy pulls a pepper spray cannister and threatens to spray the driver.
A few moments later, when the driver reaches for the open door, apparently to shut it, the deputy pulls his gun, points it at him and says: “You take off in this car, I’m gonna shoot you. I’m gonna make it super easy on you: You put this car in drive, you’re getting one right to the chest.”
“If you don’t listen, you’re done,” the deputy adds.
The driver raises his hands and says at one point: “So you’re gonna shoot me? I’m sitting in the damn car, bro.”
“Move your hands from right there, and you’re done,” the deputy says.
Hands still up, the driver finally gets out and is handcuffed.
“While the department does not make statements related to ongoing investigations, Sheriff (Robert) Luna has made it clear that he expects department personnel to treat all members of the public with dignity and respect, and that personnel who do not uphold our training standards will be held accountable,” the department statement said.
The Sheriff’s Department didn’t immediately say why the car was stopped and declined to identify the driver because of the ongoing investigation.
However, local rapper Feezy Lebron said he was the driver.
In an Instagram post (edited for spelling), Lebron identified the two deputies and urged followers: “Let’s get this guy’s face out there before he gets a chance to MURDER a young Black male sitting in his PARKED car ..Unarmed.”
“Remember they just want a reason to KILL you,” the post said.
A message seeking additional comment from Lebron wasn’t immediately returned Friday.