Beverly White & David Gregory
An 37-year-old schizophrenic man died following an altercation with El Monte Police who were responding to a domestic disturbance call. His family has hired an attorney and are accusing police of being responsible for his death. Beverly White reports from El Monte for the NBC4 News at 11 p.m. on June 15, 2012.
A 37-year-old schizophrenic man died after an altercation with police, and the family is accusing El Monte police officers of being responsible.
Police responded to the home in the 2700 block of Caminar Avenue in El Monte shortly before 11 p.m. Thursday, June 14, after they received a family disturbance call.
Diane Le said she called police to report that her brother, Khoa Anh Le, was pushing her father.
“Just family matters,” she said.
When officers arrived, the victim became physically violent and an altercation between Le and the suspects ensued, said Lt. John Hocking with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
While Le was being detained by officers, police noticed he was having medical complications and requested emergency personnel, Hocking said. Le was transported to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Two officers were injured in the confrontation, Hocking said. Both have been released from the hospital and officials said they did not know the nature of the officers' injuries.
The victim’s family said the incident that occurred in their garage was unwarranted.
“I saw him, the police kicking my brother while he was down on his knees,” said Diana Le.
While sheriff’s officials will not say what, if any, weapons were used during the altercation citing an ongoing investigation, the family’s attorney claims flashlights and Tasers were involved in the fight.
“He was choked, he was Tasered four times, approximately four times, and he was beaten with a flashlight,” said Hoang Huy Tu, the family’s attorney.
El Monte police did not comment on the investigation, which is being handled by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
A coroner’s investigator has not yet been assigned to the case because the victim was pronounced dead at a hospital, officials said.