Boyle Heights demonstrators demand justice for teen shot dead by police

Rally demanding justice | Antonio Mejías-Rentas

Jose Mendez demonstration | Antonio Mejías-Rentas

By Antonio Mejías-Rentas

Boyle Heights Beat SmallBOYLE HEIGHTS — Juan Méndez said he found out that his 16-year-old son had been shot and killed by police when detectives called him at work.

“They said it was a shooting and left a detective’s phone number, and that’s it,” said the father of José Méndez, the teen who was killed in a February 6 officer-involved shooting that is under investigation.

Méndez, a 48-year-old immigrant from Mexico City, said he met with detectives who took only two minutes to detail how his son was killed, and that he did not get a satisfactory explanation. He said that an eyewitness told him the boy was shot six times and that police officers dragged his body several feet away from where he fell. The elder Méndez has yet to see his son’s body.

Read the full story at Boyle Heights Beat.

Boyle Heights Beat is a bilingual community newspaper produced by its youth and a sister website with stories also produced by community members “por y para la comunidad.”

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  1. I am not condoning police violence, but a sawed off shot gun in a stolen vehicle? That’s a tricky situation.

    From the article in the Boyle Heights Beat:

    Police say the night of the shooting José Méndez was driving a stolen vehicle and was stopped by police near the intersection of 6th and Lorena Streets. “The young man did have a sawed-off shotgun and pointed it at the officers, and an officer-involved shooting did occur,” said LAPD Captain Martín Baeza, commanding officer.

    • If by “tricky situation” you mean felony crimes then we agree.

      These protesters are setting a bad example for the youth in their community. Rather than the message being – don’t steal cars and carry guns it is – do what ever criminal activity you want and when you don’t get away with it, blame the police. Shame on all of you.

  2. “Because the boy had been in trouble with the law, Méndez said his son had been placed in a group home in Chatsworth, from which he escaped on January 3. He said probation officers visited him at his home and told him that if he did not return to the placement facility, they would issue an order for his arrest. Méndez said his son was afraid and went into hiding.”

    Better parenting please.

  3. Protest over a teen that got killed by cops because he had a sawed off and was in a stolen vehicle? Is this for real? Blame the father not the cops.

  4. Boyle Heights demonstrators demand justice for police shot dead by teen. Yeah, we will ever see that!

  5. There have been several gang killings lately – one stabbing in Lincoln Heights two weeks ago that didn’t even make the news. Iv’e noticed a lot more police activity and there is a lot of tagging too. There is some crap going down between these gangs and you can bet that kid didn’t have that sawed off shotgun to go duck hunting. Shifting blame from gang members to police is not going to get a lot of traction around here. Most people are rational. Only the uppity activists and apologist parents will try and make something of this, the rest of us know better.

  6. Because the LAPD has never done anything wrong, right? Rampart! The cops who fired however many shots at the two ladies who were driving a truck that looked like Dorner’s. Mark Furhman! While every case should be judged upon it’s own evidence, to blindly support the LAPD is foolish!

  7. This is a pretty cynical ploy by these ‘activists’ to try to ride the coattails of the Black Lives Matter movement, which has some real grievances about police harassment. These people are cranky that police shot a shotgun-wielding car thief? I blame the dead idiot and his parenting.

    • I would take the LAPD’s version of events with a giant mound of salt. Stolen car? Okay, kid is obviously not Johnny Do Right. But I would proceed cautiously on whether to believe he was “wielding” or “pointed” the shotgun at police. They could have found it in the car and made that claim in order to justify the killing of a teenage car thief. Public record shows they’ve done worse over the years.

    • Boyle Heights doesn’t have to ride anybody’s coattails or assign a color to the topic of police brutality. Besides, your disingenuous posturing isn’t fooling anybody into believing that you’re sympathetic to either cause regardless of color or shared history. Your notorious for your coded and cynical posts typically loaded with contempt for those actually living in society as opposed to bitter shut-ins like yourself.

  8. cops are specifically told to say that “their life is endangered” out loud to get around legalities. and the sheriff’s department has a shoot first policy. The LA sheriffs have no business in local maters.

    • Yeah, just don’t believe that all cops are out there waiting to shoot 16 yr old delinquents. It’s a narrative pushed by folks with other agendas. Mistakes are made and abuse of power exists, but making martyrs out of criminals does not advance the cause. Just ends up looking like another case of crying wolf.

  9. Does it have to be “all” to become a distinct concern for residents whose only agenda is not being mistaken for a “usual suspect”? It’s also not a case of suspecting all cops are out there waiting to shoot 16-year-olds, which is a gross over-simplification by folks with other agendas. Desperately wanting to trust those authorized to carry firearms in your neighborhood is the primary goal/agenda and one that ALL should embrace without hesitation. Otherwise, “folks with other agendas” is such a vague and general category that essentially includes anyone and everyone who questions or scrutinizes the actions of law enforcement, which at the moment is in critical need of scrutiny and correction. Hell(?!) when the Sheriff himself admits to lying and other illegal behavior to avoid scrutiny and accountability it’s obvious that business as usual is unacceptable.

    • He was in a stolen car and carrying a fire arm. That is not innocent behavior. Shame on you, Proper Douche. You know this is indefensible. You and your brethren need to stop playing the victim card.

  10. The young man was obviously enduring a difficult and unhappy circumstance in his personal life. A desire to escape from the pain may have led him to actions likely to result in going out in a blaze of glory.

  11. Why not protest all the gang-on-gang murders? Does that not bother anyone?

    • There’s no need. Unlike the criminals masquerading as law enforcement, gang members are usually punished for murder.

  12. He never pointed the gun at nobody . Duke In Paradise Jose Rip

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