Man missing both legs dead after being shot by police multiple times
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Activists are demanding justice after a double amputee was shot dead by police during an altercation in California.
Police responded to the scene in Huntington Park last Thursday (26 January) following reports that a man had been stabbed by another man in a wheelchair.
When they arrived at the scene, police said they found Anthony Lowe Jr. with a 12-inch butcher knife which he allegedly used to threaten the officers.
The victim of the stabbing was also found to be suffering from 'a life-threatening stab wound resulting in a collapsed lung and internal bleeding', a statement from the police said.
Huntington Park Police Department claimed they tried to taser Lowe twice with no success.
In the statement, they continued: “The suspect continued to threaten officers with the butcher knife, resulting in an officer-involved shooting."
Lowe, who was 36 years old, was shot multiple times by the responding officers and was pronounced dead on scene.
Following Lowe's death, his family have been supported by activists from the Coalition for Community Control Over the Police, which held a conference outside Huntington Park Police Department to raise awareness for Lowe's death.
Lowe's cousin, Ellakenyada Gorum, told the crowd: "He was loved. And it's sad how these police are getting away with killing our African American people. Just getting away with it. He was in a wheelchair. What more could he do? What more could he do?
"You guys knew your lives wasn't in danger," Gorum added. "He's running on his limbs how cold-hearted could they be?"
Lowe's mother, who was also at the event, said: "They murdered my son, in a wheelchair with no legs. They do need to do something about it."
Gorum claimed the family had not had much contact from the department or the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, which is assisting in the investigation.
Lowe's sister, Yatoya Toy, commented: "We want justice for our whole family."
Following the altercation, the officers involved have been placed on paid administrative leave pending ongoing investigations from Huntington Park Police Department, the sheriff’s department’s Homicide Bureau and the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
After the sheriff's department completes its investigation, The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office will conduct an independent review into the matter.
In a statement, Communications Director Tiffiny Blacknell commented: “We know that the Black community in Los Angeles is reeling and searching for answers. We know nothing can heal the trauma the community is experiencing right now.
"Los Angeles County deserves to know how and why these incidents have occurred," Blacknell added.