PASADENA, Calif. (KTLA) — Two Pasadena police officers who shot and killed 19-year-old Kendrec McDade last March have been cleared of any wrongdoing.
The fatal shooting happened on March 24, after a man called 911 to report being robbed by two suspects at gunpoint near a taco truck in northwest Pasadena.
The Los Angeles County district attorney’s office found the two officers reasonably believed McDade was armed with a gun based on false information from the 911 caller.
A report issued Monday also noted the position of McDade’s hand at his waistband during a foot pursuit by the officers.
The incident began when Oscar Carrillo reported that his computer had been stolen, falsely telling police eight times that he had been robbed at gunpoint.
Officers Jeffrey Newlen and Mathew Griffin responded to the scene and chased McDade onto a dark nearby side street.
“The actions of McDade during the pursuit in conjunction with the information known to the officers at the time of the shooting reasonably created a fear of imminent death or serious bodily injury,” the report said.
“Once the officers perceived that McDade posed an apparent lethal threat their response with deadly force was justified.”
Prosecutors revealed that after one officer shot and wounded McDade, the second officer, believing McDade had opened fire, shot him again.
McDade was later found to be unarmed. He was carrying a cellphone in his pocket. He died after being taken to Huntington Memorial Hospital.
A security video shows a teenage companion of McDade’s taking a computer from Carrillo’s car. McDade is seen at the rear of the car. The footage shows no weapon or confrontation.
Carrillo later admitted that he had lied about the suspects being armed to get a quicker response. Police arrested him on suspicion of manslaughter, but prosecutors declined to file charges.
The shooting has prompted four inquiries and a federal lawsuit from McDade’s parents, which alleges he was handcuffed and left on the street without receiving first aid.
Dale Galipo, a lawyer representing the mother, said he was “disappointed but not surprised” at Monday’s decision not to pursue charges against he officers.
“The only time they prosecute is when they have no choice due to public and political pressure and when it’s caught on video,” he said.