BY Elizabeth Stauffer, The Western JournalJanuary 15, 2023
1 year ago

Activists Claim Cops Murdered BLM Co-Founder's Cousin, Then the Body Cam Footage Comes Out

Following a Jan. 3 traffic accident at a busy intersection in the Venice neighborhood of Los Angeles witnesses say he caused, Keenan Anderson, 31, tried to flee the police. According to witnesses, Anderson showed signs of being under the influence of drugs, including extreme paranoia and agitation. Police issued multiple warnings he would be tased if he continued to resist. He failed to comply after numerous requests by the officer and was ultimately tased. Anderson was transported to an area hospital, where he later died after suffering cardiac arrest.

Anderson was the cousin of Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors, who has made the case the latest example of police brutality against blacks. Cullors' fall from grace came in April 2021 after The New York Post reported she had used BLM donations to purchase several high-end properties worth millions.

After Anderson's death, Cullors posted his photograph to Instagram with the following message: "This is my cousin Keenan Anderson. He was killed by LAPD in Venice on January 3rd, 2023. My cousin was an educator and worked with high school aged children. He was an English teacher. LAPD has killed three people this year. One of them is my family member. Keenan deserves to be alive right now, his child deserves to be raised by his father. Keenan we will fight for you and for all of our loved ones impacted by state violence. I love you. #JusticeForKeenan#BlackLivesMatter."

Despite Cullors' portrayal of this episode, body camera video released by the officers involved tells a far different story.

In the video below, Los Angeles Police Department Captain Kelly Muñiz, tells reporters that witnesses said Anderson was “running in the middle of the street and exhibiting erratic behavior.”

The officer asked Anderson to sit down and he complied "for several minutes," Muniz said. After backup arrived, Anderson got up and ran into the street. The officers ordered him to stop and "to get on the ground."

"As the police tried to take Anderson into custody, he became increasingly agitated, uncooperative and resisted the officers," she said.

An officer shouts "Get out of the street" to Anderson, who shouts back that, "Somebody's trying to kill me, sir."

Contrary to Cullors' claims, the video shows the officer being extremely patient with Anderson.

Anderson tells him, “They’re trying to put stuff in my car.”

“Who’s trying to put stuff in your car?” the officer asks.

A message on the video said that seven minutes later, Anderson tried to run away again. The officer continued to be patient, even kind, to Anderson.

Still refusing to comply, Anderson tries to flee again. The officer finally runs out of patience and yells for Anderson to lie down on his stomach.

After he is restrained by the police, he appeals to bystanders for help. Anderson cries out, "They're trying to George Floyd me. ... They're trying to kill me. ...

The officer issues multiple warnings that if Anderson refuses to turn over on his stomach, he will be tased.

Anderson continues to resist and the officer tases him repeatedly.

Muniz plays footage from the body cameras worn by other officers on the scene. In one, a male bystander is heard telling the officer, "That guy right there [Anderson], he caused the accident. He was trying to steal my car. The police are doing the right, uh, job right now. Don't think that the police are abusing him. He was trying to, uh, go away. ... I'm a Uber driver and he was trying to steal my car while he, uh, hit the other cars right there."

The officer asks, "Was he in the car?

"Yeah, he was in the BMW right there," the Uber driver replies.

At one point, Anderson is heard repeating, "C Lo."

“Help! They think I killed C-Lo, they think I killed C-Lo, help me, please! ... They’re trying to sedate me, I know too much!” Anderson screams as cops handcuff him and strap his legs together.

“While at the hospital and after approximately four and a half hours following the use of force, Anderson experienced a medical emergency, did not respond to life-saving efforts by medical staff and was pronounced deceased,” Muniz told reporters.

She also said police had conducted a "preliminary toxicology blood screen" and determined that Anderson "tested positive for cocaine metabolite and cannibinoids." She added that the county medical examiner's office would be conducting its own independent toxicology testing.

Social media users recognized Cullors' disingenuous characterization of this incident for what it was: a pathetic attempt to make cops out to be murderers.

Independent journalist Greg Price provides a reality check in the brief Twitter thread below.

Anderson's death did not have to happen. For him and so many others, including George Floyd and Daunte Wright, who was accidentally shot by a Minneapolis police officer in April 2021 when she mistook her gun for her taser, the trouble began when they chose to resist the police.

Although not all the facts in this case are known at this time, the body camera footage from the officers on the scene doesn't support Cullors' narrative. As they say, "the camera doesn't lie."

Most of us are not lawyers and we can only base our opinions on what we see. And, so far, we've seen nothing to have us believe that the officers involved behaved improperly.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

Written by: Elizabeth Stauffer, The Western Journal



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