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Family Sues LAPD, City Of Los Angeles Over Shooting Of Mentally Ill Woman

(Photo by Steve Lyon via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr)
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The LAPD and City of Los Angeles are being sued for shooting a mentally ill woman after her mother requested mental health professionals to help her, according to CBS.

The complaint is expected to be filed Tuesday on behalf of Kamesha Davidson, who was diagnosed with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder when she was a child, long before the November 2011 shooting at the apartment complex where she lived with her family. (Note: CBS reports her and age as Kamisha Davidson, 18, but several other outlets give her name as Kamesha Davidson, 30.)

That day, Davidson's mother found her "highly agitated" and "in the full grip of a mental episode" when she locked herself in her room and refused to come out, lawyers told CBS.

Davidson allegedly pulled out a stick with nails and bit an officer when police approached her. She struggled with the police until one of them shot her in the stomach. The officer who shot Davidson says she grabbed his groin.

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“The police response to the mentally ill has been horrible,” attorney Randy H. McMurray told CBS. “The lack of seeking help from mental health professionals has resulted in deaths and serious injuries especially where those persons killed and maimed are people of color.”

Davidson was treated at the UCLA Medical Center, where she recovered from the wound. After being hospitalized, she was sent to the L.A. County Jail without trial for one year, on charges of assaulting the officers who approached her.

The Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office will pursue charges against Davidson, who lives with her mother.