Compton

Wrongfully Detained Compton Youth Leader Demands Accountability

“I am put in handcuffs, escorted out of my dwelling where I live through my business with no underwear, no shoes, no socks,” Derrick Cooper said

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A youth leader wrongfully detained in Compton is demanding the deputies responsible be held accountable.

The LA County Sheriff Department said they were responding to an alarm call at the business of Derrick Cooper. But Cooper says he doesn’t have an alarm and never made a call to report a burglary when he was detained Tuesday.

“I was about to die that day. All I kept thinking was, ‘I have so much work to do. Let me live. So much work to do in this community. Please, don’t kill me. Please, don’t shoot me,” a visibly upset Cooper said at a press conference Friday.

His lawyers shared surveillance video of the Compton sheriff’s deputies entering his business with their weapons drawn and walking to the back where Cooper was sleeping.

Cooper said it was 4.m., and he woke up to the sound of deputies shouting.

“I am put in handcuffs, escorted out of my dwelling where I live through my business with no underwear, no shoes, no socks,” Cooper said.

Cooper operates the LA City Wildcats Youth Academy in Compton. He operates the business in the front and lives in an apartment in the back of the building.

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In a statement, the LA County Sheriff’s Department said deputies went to the building for an attempted burglary call.  “While searching for the suspect, Mr. Derrick Cooper was detained inside of the Wildcat Youth Facility. After it was determined Mr. Cooper was not a suspect, he was released several minutes after the contact,” according to the department.

Cooper said he was detained and held in the back of the patrol car for 20 minutes before he was released. The sheriff’s department said it is investigating the matter.

“To walk him outside completely nude from the waist down, with his genitals exposed, and be placed in a police car the same manner is unthinkable and unjustifiable. and we expect the authorities to hold the right people accountable because through the court of law we certainly will,” said Kellan Davis, an attorney for Cooper.

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