Los Angeles County Sheriff's deputies were caught on cellphone video (below) fatally shooting a black man, Nicholas Robertson, as he walked and crawled away from them on Dec. 12 in Lynwood, California.
"We have witnesses that say that the suspect turned, pointed the gun at the deputies, and a deputy-involved shooting occurred," Lt. Eddie Hernandez of the sheriff's Homicide Bureau told KTLA.
Hernandez said deputies were responding to a call about a black man in a checkered shirt armed with a gun, but it's not clear if the gun was fired.
Robertson reportedly failed to comply with orders to drop the gun.
An anonymous person sent the cellphone video to KTLA, which reports that more than 30 shots were heard on the video.
In the video, Robertson walks away from the deputies, and starts crawling as deputies fire at him. He died at the scene.
“The video is just one piece of evidence that’s going to be examined as a part of a comprehensive, protracted, long investigation, and that’ll be analyzed against the physical evidence, the witness statements and the deputies’ statements,” Hernandez told KTLA.
Robertson's family says the 28-year-old man was unarmed.
Later on Dec. 12, more than a dozen protestors marched at the shooting scene, calling for answers and waving signs.
"When they shot him in the shoulder and I see him falling … that’s injustice, for me," Robertson's mother-in-law, Pamela Brown, told the news station.
The Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office, Sheriff's Homicide Bureau and Internal Affairs Bureau are investigating the incident, according to a press release from the sheriff's department.
"We understand the significant community concern anytime the police are involved in the use of deadly force," Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell said at a press conference on Dec. 13, reports Reuters.
"We owe it to the family, to the public and the justice system to be thorough and deliberate" in the investigation, McDonnell added.
"In this modern age of cellphone video and instant analysis on the Internet, I would ask that we keep in mind that a thorough and comprehensive investigation is detailed and time-intensive."
WARNING: Video contains graphic content and language.