News and Commentary

L.A. County Sheriff To LeBron: ‘Step Up To The Plate’ And Double Reward To Find Man Who Shot Deputies
BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS - JANUARY 20: LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers prepares for the game against the Boston Celtics at TD Garden on January 20, 2020 in Boston, Massachusetts.
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Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva challenged NBA player LeBron James, who engages in left-wing activism promoting Democrats while off the court, to step up and double the reward money being offered to find the man who is responsible for shooting two sheriff’s deputies in the head late last week.

“This challenge is to Lebron James. I want you to match that and double that reward,” Villanueva said. “I know you care about law enforcement. You expressed a very interesting statement about your perspective on race relations and on officer-involved shootings and the impact that it has on the African-American community. And I appreciated that. But likewise, we need to appreciate that respect for life goes across professions, across races, creeds, and I’d like to see LeBron James step up to the plate and double that.”

CBS Los Angeles noted that there were two private pledges totaling $75,000 for information that leads to the arrest of the individual responsible for the shooting. That money is in addition to the $100,000 that is being offered by the county.

“James, who has been vocal about police shootings involving Black people, had not publicly responded to the sheriff’s challenge as of early Tuesday morning,” The Associated Press reported. “Last month, James expressed outrage after an officer shot Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin, saying that Black people in America are ‘terrified.'”

Following police shooting Blake, James wrote on Twitter: “And y’all wonder why we say what we say about the Police!! Someone please tell me WTF is this???!!! Exactly another black man being targeted. This s**t is so wrong and so sad!! Feel so sorry for him, his family and OUR PEOPLE!! We want JUSTICE”

The Kenosha Professional Police Association (KPPA) released a statement about the shooting, noting that the suspect had a felony warrant out for his arrest, that he was allegedly armed, and that he allegedly assaulted police officers.

The statement then outlined in chronological order the series of events that officers claimed happened:

  • Mr. Blake was not unarmed. He was armed with a knife. The officers did not see the knife initially. The officers first saw him holding the knife while they were on the passenger side of the vehicle. The “main” video circulating on the internet shows Mr. Blake with the knife in his left hand when he rounds the front of the car. The officers issued repeated commands for Mr. Blake to drop the knife. He did not comply.
  • The officers initially tried to speak with Mr. Blake, but he was uncooperative.
  • The officers then began issuing verbal commands to Mr. Blake, but he was non-complaint.
  • The officers next went “hands-on” with Mr. Blake, so as to gain compliance and control.
  • Mr. Blake actively resisted the officers’ attempt to gain compliance.
  • The officers then disengaged and drew their tasers, issuing commands to Mr. Blake that he would be tased if he did not comply.
  • Based on his non-compliance, one officer tased Mr. Blake. The taser did not incapacitate Mr. Blake.
  • The officers once more went “hands-on” with Mr. Blake; again, trying to gain control of the escalating situation.
  • Mr. Blake forcefully fought with the officers, including putting one of the officers in a headlock.
  • A second taser (from a different officer than had deployed the initial taser) was then deployed on Mr. Blake. It did not appear to have any impact on him.
  • Based on the inability to gain compliance and control after using verbal, physical and less-lethal means, the officers drew their firearms.
  • Mr. Blake continued to ignore the officers’ commands, even with the threat of lethal force now present.

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