Unarmed Man Killed by Deputies in Willowbrook Was Shot 6 Times, With Half of Wounds to Back: Coroner’s Autopsy

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Ryan Twyman, 24, is seen in a photo shown on a T-shirt worn by a person attending a fundraiser for his family in Willowbrook on June 14, 2019. He was fatally shot by sheriff's deputies in the same neighborhood on June 6, 2019. (Credit: KTLA)
Ryan Twyman, 24, is seen in a photo shown on a T-shirt worn by a person attending a fundraiser for his family in Willowbrook on June 14, 2019. He was fatally shot by sheriff’s deputies in the same neighborhood on June 6, 2019. (Credit: KTLA)

An unarmed man killed by sheriff’s deputies in Willowbrook earlier this year was shot six times, with three of the bullets entering his back, a coroner’s report released Thursday shows.

The fatal shooting of 24-year-old Compton resident Ryan Twyman sparked outrage in the community and on social media, including an Instagram post from rapper The Game calling on Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti to provide answers in the case.

Twyman was also shot in his jaw, right flank and through his left upper arm after deputies spotted his white Kia sedan, wanted in connection with weapons violations, in the parking lot of an apartment complex on East 132nd Street the evening of June 6.

The deputies fired 34 rounds total as the car backed up, causing them to believe it was being used as a weapon, according to the Sheriff’s Department.

Twyman’s official cause of death was multiple gunshot wounds, with two to his back determined to be fatal. Four bullets were recovered from his body, according to the report from the county Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner.

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No drugs or alcohol were found in his system, but the autopsy noted that a bag containing marijuana was located on the ground near the Kia’s driver’s side door.

A witness at scene told investigators Twyman had a history of grand mal seizures since childhood.

The report was completed June 8 but released Wednesday. Officials did not give a reason for the delay.

The Sheriff’s Department says its detectives had been looking for Twyman, who was named in a felony warrant for alleged weapons violations, before the fatal encounter. Some firearms were recovered during a search of his residence in April, but Twyman wasn’t home at the time.

After spotting the vehicle parked in Willowbrook, a pair of deputies approached it on foot and gave verbals command, officials say.

Video released by the L.A. County Sheriff's Department shows deputies fatally shooting Ryan Twyman on June 6, 2019, in Willowbrook.
Video released by the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department shows deputies fatally shooting Ryan Twyman on June 6, 2019, in Willowbrook.

Video the department released of the shooting shows the deputies were standing on each side of the car when one of them opened a rear passenger door.

Twyman then reversed the vehicle, pulling the deputy with it and causing the door to strike him.

That’s when both deputies opened fire with handguns. At some point, one deputy grabbed a rifle from the patrol car and continued shooting.

The Sheriff’s Department has said the passenger wasn’t injured, but the coroner’s report says he was hospitalized with non-life threatening wounds.

The coroner’s report noted numerous bullet holes were seen in the windows and passenger side of the Kia.

The passenger was identified as 22-year-old Deimeon Laffell in a claim filed by Twyman’s family against L.A. County.

The claim alleges the men “made no aggressive movements, furtive gestures or physical movements which would suggest to a reasonable law enforcement officer that either of them was armed with any kind of weapon.”

Family members said Twyman was the father of three children.

The same night he was killed, authorities fatally shot two other men in Inglewood and San Gabriel.

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I can remember us having a conversation about bettering Los Angeles awhile back on both sides of the ball. You were genuine & from what I could see a good human that wanted change just as much as us. Well now I’m calling on you @mayorofla Eric Garcetti……. We need answers on how Los Angeles Sheriff’s could shoot my family #RyanTwyman 37 times while unarmed & murder him in cold blood ??? I want everyone reading this to count to 37 with your eyes closed & imagine every number is a Buckley entering the body of your son, brother, father cousin, friend….. Tell me what on earth he could’ve done to deserve 37 bullets with no weapon on him ?!?!?!?!?!?!?!? Then I want @mayorofla to imagine himself not being here for his children this Father’s Day weekend due to being maliciously killed by the @lasdhq !!!! No one from your side has spoken a word on the matter & we will not let this slide or be swept under the rug !!!! We will not be quiet nor will anyone get a pass for this kill. There is absolutely no excuse for this & we need to hear from you soon !!!!! Today !!!! Los Angeles will not be quiet !!!!!!!!!!!!#Justice4RyanTwyman

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Another young black man taken away from his children at the hands of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s department. Under no circumstances should anyone unarmed be shot 37 times. Read the number…. 37 times !!!! This is a sick pattern & happens way too often these days. A father, a son, a brother, a human. 37 bullets & for what ?!?!? What’s the explanation… How y’all gone try to cover this one up ?!?!? Killed in Compton on 132nd & San Pedro in a neighborhood I’m all too familiar with. There has always been tension between the Sheriff’s & the youth in Compton & the hatred authority has for black children & those of Hispanic background is very visible & most including myself do or did whatever necessary to avoid confrontation with you heartless mothafuckas. What about Ryan, enraged you so much that you felt the need to shoot him 37 fuckin times while he was unarmed ?!?!? Sad times we are living in as this occurrence & ones like it get little or know media coverage as we know the mass agenda wants it swept under the rug. Let a civilian shoot an officer 37 times & the entire world would’ve known about it as soon as it happened. What does the value of ones life depend on ? Color ?? Privilege ???? Job title ?? What is it ??? Police, peace officers, protect & serve…. naw, y’all trained assassins these days & young minorities are being targeted & gunned down with no regard for their lives. This shit really hurts my heart. & then the media wants posts about his murder but fails to include the amount of times he was shot just for sitting in his car with with girlfriend & friend who were beaten & taken into custody. And I repeat, no weapon was found on his person or at the scene. I’d ask, how do y’all sleep at night but I already know the answer is “comfortably” as police killing men of color in this country seems to be legal at the rate situations like this arise. My condolences to Ryan’s entire family as I am truly saddened to hear of his murder & the magnitude of force inflicted on him in such a defenseless state. 24 years old & stripped of his future by cowards #JusticeForRyanTwyman #WIPBenzo 🙏🏾

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