Tags: ricardo diaz zeferino | video | police | shooting

Ricardo Diaz-Zeferino Video: Judge Unseals Footage of Police Shooting

By    |   Wednesday, 15 Jul 2015 10:55 AM

Ricardo Diaz-Zeferino, an unarmed Southern California man, is seen in recently released video being shot and killed by police in 2013.

The video footage was captured by the dashboard cameras inside two police vehicles, and the Gardena police fought to keep the recordings private for two long years, the Los Angeles Times reported this week.

On Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Stephen V. Wilson ordered that the videos be unsealed, saying the public had an interest in seeing them.

The case itself has long been settled, as prosecutors declined to bring criminal charges against the officers who fired, and settled a civil suit for $4.7 million.

Gardena attorneys had argued in court that the settlement money had been paid with the belief that the video would remain sealed, however that line of reasoning fell flat with the judge.

"Defendants' argument backfires here — the fact that they spent the city's money, presumably derived from taxes, only strengthens the public's interest in seeing the videos," Wilson wrote. "Moreover, while the videos are potentially upsetting and disturbing because of the events they depict, they are not overly gory or graphic in a way that would make them a vehicle for improper purposes."

After the videos were published, 9th Circuit Judge Alex Kozinski issued an order saying that, "the police car camera video footage shall remain under seal pending further order of this court," however it was too late.

The shooting incident transpired June 2, 2013, when police responded to a call about a stolen bike, which belonged to Diaz-Zeferino's brother. The police dispatcher mistakenly told officers it was a robbery — which implied the bike was taken by force of threat. Officers then encountered Diaz-Zeferino and two friends, who were all looking for the bike, and apparently mistook them as the thieves.

 


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Ricardo Diaz-Zeferino, an unarmed Southern California man, is seen in recently released video being shot and killed by police in 2013.
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2015-55-15
Wednesday, 15 Jul 2015 10:55 AM
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