Crime & Investigation

Olango Shooting:  Protests Rock U.S. City

Protesters gather along Broadway Avenue to protest the fatal shooting of an unarmed black man on Tuesday by officers in El Cajon, California. REUTERS/Sandy Huffaker

U.S. police on Thursday night arrested two protesters as demonstrations against the shooting dead of Ugandan-born American citizen Alfred Olango, cheap 38, gained momentum.

Born in Gulu, Olango was Wednesday killed by cops in El Cajon, California, sparking a public backlash.

Olango’s sister had called in police to help his brother who was “mentally perturbed and needed help.”

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Eyewitnesses maintain Olango was unarmed when he was shot much as police insist he took a shooting stance.

Police said Olango rapidly drew an “object” from his pocket and extended it rapidly toward an officer, taking “what appeared to be a shooting stance, putting the object in the officer’s face.”

“The object that Mr. Olango drew from his pant pocket and pointed at the officer is a vape smoking device. The vape has an all silver cylinder (Smok TFV4 MINI) that is approximately 1” diameter and 3” long that was pointed toward the officer,” said police.

ChimpReports has learned that police spent the better part of last night battling protesters on the streets expressing their anger over the killing of blacks by police.

In a press statement, El Cajon Police said protests started at 8:00pm in Mollison / Broadway, El Cajon.

“Tonight, a group of between 50 and 75 protestors occupied the intersection of Broadway and Mollison in El Cajon.  They began stopping vehicles and breaking their car windows,” said Police’s Lieutenant Rob Ransweiler.

“At one point, an assault took place between the protestors and a motorcyclist who was knocked off of his motorcycle.  ECPD received numerous 911 calls about the disturbance in the intersection and a group of officers from the multi-agency composite platoon moved into the area.”

An assembly was declared unlawful by law enforcement (per section 407 of the California Penal Code) at the scene and notice was given to the protestors to disperse.

However, said police, the protesters began throwing glass bottles at the cops and after the group refused to disperse pepper balls were deployed.

“Two adult males have been taken into custody for a violation of 408 PC – Every person who participates in any rout or unlawful assembly is guilty of a misdemeanor,” said police.

Who is to blame?

Blacks have claimed being victims of police’s highhandedness with records indicating that 258 blacks were shot dead by cops in 2015.

However, 6,000 black people were shot dead by fellow blacks in the same year.

Blacks who form 10 percent of the total population in United States commit 52 percent of crimes in the country.

The whites comprise 77 percent of the population in U.S.

The Ugandan government has since directed its mission in Washington to investigate Olango’s killing.

On the other hand, the U.S. Embassy in Kampala consoled the deceased’s family.

“We are aware of reports that Alfred Olango was shot and killed during an incident with law enforcement officers in El Cajon, California. We extend our deepest condolences to Mr. Olango’s family and friends,” the mission said in a brief statement.

 Release full video

Meanwhile, American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has reiterated its earlier call for the El Cajon Police Department (ECPD) and the San Diego District Attorney to provide the public with answers expeditiously; and to be accountable and transparent in all aspects of their handling of the incident, so as to reassure the public of their objectivity and to restore trust.

“Consistent with our position on transparency, we call on the ECPD to release the entire video recording of events leading up to the incident. This will help to mitigate public bias resulting from their selective release of a single still image that suggests Mr. Olango, the victim, was an imminent threat to the officer who shot and killed him,” said the organisation.

“In releasing only the single frame without context, the ECPD appears more interested in defending one of their own than providing the public with objective information. The public has the right to view the full video, not just the ECPD spin.”

ACLU cited its national data which shows that between one-third and one-half of all officer-involved shootings involve a disabled person.

“We also know that mental illness and intellectual disability can be overlooked factors in police shootings. The El Cajon Police Department was aware of and acknowledged Mr. Olango’s mental illness before arriving on the scene. Regrettably, the Psychiatric Emergency Response Team (PERT) was responding to another call and unavailable to accompany the police in their encounter with Mr. Olango,” said ACLU.

“PERT, which pairs law enforcement officers with licensed mental health professionals to respond to emergency calls involving mental health crises, works county-wide to de-escalate negative police interactions with people in crisis. We urge strong, continued investment in PERT and other mental health services that work to save public and police lives.”


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