LAPD Officer Shot And Killed A Teenager Less Than Two Weeks After Fatally Shooting Someone Else
The LAPD has identified an officer who was responsible for the shooting deaths of two suspects, the second shooting coming just 12 days after the first.
KTLA reports that officer Eden Medina has been identified as the officer involved in the July 28 shooting death of Omar Gonzalez, and the death of 14-year-old Jesse Romero on August 9.
In July, Officer Medina shot and killed 36-year-old Omar Gonzalez, who was allegedly armed, at the conclusion of a police chase that ended in Boyle Heights. Police were wearing body cameras at the time, and, as whenever there's a police shooting, the incident is under investigation by the district attorney's office and the Police Commission.
According to NBC L.A., Officer Medina was "back in the field and cleared for duty six days after the shooting death of Omar Gonzalez." This amount of time here isn't unusual; in fact, LAPD policy dictates that for an officer to return to the field, they need the approval of the police chief, which can come after a briefing about the officer's "readiness and suitability," as well as a psychological evaluation.
So 12 days after the shooting of Gonzalez, and less than a week after being cleared for duty, Medina was armed and on duty when he fatally shot 14-year-old Jesse Romero in Boyle Heights. Romero's mother Teresa Dominguez is suing the LAPD for the death of her son, and told NBC L.A. that she wondered if her son would still be alive, had the LAPD replaced Officer Medina with someone else while the investigation into Gonzalez's death was still pending.
Mayor Eric Garcetti said in a statement provided to NBC, "While we cannot discuss personnel questions or ongoing investigations relating to the deaths of Jesse Romero and Omar Gonzalez, the Mayor empathizes with loved ones who are grieving and in pain, and understands the gravity of these cases and the sensitivity around them."