Mother of Ezell Ford Threatens to Chain Herself to D.A.’s Office

We’re not against the police. We’re not against the police department, but we are against police who commit misconduct (and those who help cover it up).

Tritobia Ford, the mother of Ezell Ford who was killed in 2014 by the Los Angeles Police Department in South Los Angeles, says enough is enough and is planning to chain herself to 211 West Temple Street to remind Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey that she still owes her family an answer.

It’s been 710 days or one year, 11 months and 10 days since the killing of 25-year-old Ezell Ford in South Los Angeles by the LAPD and Lacey’s office is still pondering whether or not they want to file criminal charges against the officers involved. Next month will make two years since Ford’s death.

“I just can’t take this anymore,” said Mrs. Ford. “I used to call down to her office on a regular basis but I don’t even bother anymore because they never return my phone calls. Sometimes I feel like her office is just laughing at the pain my family and I are going through. We want to see charges filed against the officers but more importantly we just want an answer. It didn’t even take the police department this long to do their investigation so what’s the hold up really Jackie Lacey? I think it’s exactly as you said Jasmyne, she’s doing Chief Beck a favor and wasting time so he doesn’t have to do anything. I don’t know if Beck and Lacey think we will forget or that if enough time passes by no one will care anymore. At this point I feel like I have no other recourse other than to chain myself to Lacey’s office building. I would go on a hunger strike but I’d probably end up dead because they’d let me starve to death. Everything Mayor Garcetti said to me was lies. From City Hall to the LAPD to the District Attorney’s office no one has told us anything and once the cameras left, it wasn’t news anymore and Black Lives Matter wasn’t in front of the Mayor’s house, we can’t even get a phone call returned. I’m done waiting.”

Let me tell you this, the last thing Mayor Eric Garcetti needs is Black Lives Matter camped outside of City Hall and the mother of a man killed by the police chained to the outside of the District Attorney office’s. My two cents. The optics on that wouldn’t work in his favor at all.

As I said before, Lacey is using a stalling tactic known by insiders as tolling.

Tolling allows for the pausing or delaying of the running of the period of time set forth by a statute of limitations.

As long as D.A. Lacey sticks to her story of investigating the evidence on the Ford shooting, the clock is stopped for Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck who is responsible for any discipline the officers might face. Basically neither one of them has to do anything.

While there’s no statute of limitations on charging someone with murder, almost every other criminal charge that the two officers might face has a three-year time limit for charges to be filed.

Ford was killed after a questionable stop by two Los Angeles police officers on 65th and Broadway. Sharlton Wampler and Antonio Villegas, gang enforcement officers in the LAPD’s Newton Division, said they believed Ford was trying to dispose of drugs that were in his possession, which Wampler felt was sufficient evidence to arrest him. No drugs were ever found in the vicinity.

They also said that Ford tried to remove the Wampler’s handgun from its holster and that Villegas said he feared for his life and that of his partner and shot Ford in the arm, then at Wampler’s urging fired a second round into Ford’s side. Wampler said Ford continued to resist, causing him to retrieve his backup gun and used it to reach around Ford and shoot him in the back.

Villegas said he believed Ford may have been armed because he was in “a gang area.” Ford was unarmed.

To date, Chief Beck has yet to announce any decision of discipline for the two officers involved. The Police Commission has long since issued its non-binding-Chief Beck-can-take-it-or-leave-it-opinion that that one officer was justified in the shooting while the other violated Ford’s civil rights by initially detaining him.

The Los Angeles Police Protective League embarked on a character assassination after the fact public relations tour immediately after the shooting claiming that Ezell Ford was a gang member—which his family vehemently denies.

The calls for the autopsy report got so loud in November of 2014 that Mayor Eric Garcetti was forced to step in and give Chief Beck a deadline on when the autopsy results would be released by publicly announcing that the results would be released before year’s end. And I’ll be damned if Beck didn’t ride it out until the last possible minute to release that little bit of information.

The autopsy was released on December 29. It showed Ford was shot three times, in the back, side and right arm. The gunshot wound in his back bore a “muzzle imprint” suggesting the shot was fired at very close range. It also noted multiple abrasions to Ford’s hand and arm.

Meanwhile Ezell Ford’s family filed a $75 million wrongful death lawsuit against the LAPD in federal court.

Insiders close to the situation tell me that Lacey has no plans on charging the officers involved and that it is very unlikely the officers will face any serious discipline or be fired by Chief Beck.

The Court of Public Opinion

  • cutty sark

    But undercover gang unit members did recognize the Ford’s when they thought someone shot at them and ran away while they patrolled at 64th and Broadway.
    You are refering to the incident O.I.S. 023-15, is that right?
    O.I.S. 023-15 which was adjudicated before the LAPD B.O.C. last February, but the report of which remains inaccessible under Chief Beck’s policy of transparency in most cases and secrecy when it involves certain gang unit members on the dept. and potential criminal acts.
    That was members of the Ford family who shot at undercover gang unit members and could have easily killed them, is that right?
    No. They probably couldn’t have been killed because probably nobody was shooting at them.
    And it almost certainly was nobody from the Ford family who could have been shooting at them because they never arrested any of the Ford’s on suspicion of that. They did bring in helicopters, SWAT teams and police dogs and placed the area under full lock-down order for several hours – but they didn’t go searching for suspects at the Ford residence.
    And although the gang unit members claim they were shot at and they returned fire at the shooters on the open street and they locked down a neighborhood and they conducted a search with SWAT teams and police dogs –
    they have never arrested anyone for shooting at them,
    they have never provided a suspect sketch of anyone who was shooting at them and who they shot at,
    they have never provided any description at all of any suspect.
    But they did detain 2 young men, put them in the back of a patrol car, transported them to the station, kept them overnight and let them out the back door the following afternoon.
    They did not arrest those men because arrest would create a searchable record and the gang unit members didn’t need that.
    They simply needed a pretense to lock-down the area and a cover under which to bring out 2 guys who had spent approx 42 hrs. hiding in a vacant back unit after successfully completing the mission which they were sent in for –
    to assassinate the primary civilian eyewitness to the shooting of Ezell Ford.

  • cutty sark

    The display of selective memory by your gang unit is utterly mind-bongling when it involves their ability to recognize members of the Ezell Ford family.
    When gang unit members go looking for Ezell Ford and then find him and kill him, they say they didn’t recognize him and didn’t remember him from their previous arrest and interrogation which is documented in their own records.
    You have detectives who provided testimony involving Ezell Ford in the trials for 2 men who were then convicted and sentenced for murder, but your gang unit members don’t know Ezell Ford.
    In the area where the Fords live, there are no homes on the west side of Grand for blocks and blocks, only the massive sound wall abutting the 110 Harbor Fwy.
    The only continuous East-West routes are the major boulevards that bridge across the 110 Harbor Fwy.
    All of the other east-west streets are T-intersections at Grand and the Harbor Fwy sound wall. That means that anyone driving west on 66th from Broadway must come to a complete stop at Grand before making the right-turn and heading North.

    They must STOP in front of the Ford residence on the corner of 66th and Grand,
    where a portable basketball backboard is set on the street at the curb in front of the house and the green Dodge van is parked on the concrete pad of the front yard – but your gang unit members don’t know Ezell Ford.

    That’s the same Ford residence and same green Dodge van where officers had previously arrested Ezell Ford and his dad and his brother on marijuana related charges. Officers transported the arrested Fords to the police station where each one was individually questioned and then booked, and a notation was made in their files that Ezell Ford was a gang member whose moniker was Lil Eazy – but your gang unit members don’t know Ezell Ford.

    One of those officers who had spent years patrolling that area and had participated in the arrest and questioning went on to become a gang unit member covering that same area.
    Part of his job as a gang unit member is to be able to recognize the gang members who regularly operate or reside in the area.

    As he patrolled down 65th with his partner in August 2014 he drove past a group of men congregated on a sidewalk, some of whom he recognized as gang members.
    They chose not to stop and engage those gang members, but followed after Ezell Ford walking alone on the other side of the street.

    They thought Ford may have come out from an alley(like all other alleys in the area it was a place where drugs were sometimes exchanged or used) so they decided to stop him for that reason,
    but they didn’t recognize him and didn’t know who he was because they don’t remember the Fords and don’t know who they are.

  • Email me. We need to talk.

  • Pingback: Did the LAPD Have the Primary Civilian Witness to the Ezell Ford Shooting Assassinated? | Jasmyne Cannick()

  • cutty sark

    Some people remain under the mistaken impression that L.A. District Attorney Lacey will always try to do what her job description says she is supposed to do, what her oath of office has committed her to do and what the voters elected her to do.
    D.A. Lacey mostly operates her office according to those dictums, except in certain cases where political forces and political agendas seek to overide doing it by the book.
    That is when D.A. Lacey does what she was selected to do.
    Lacey was selected by Steve Cooley to take over running the D.A.’s office because he could count on her to run it exactly like he ran it when it came to these vested political agendas.
    Those political agendas include, starting at top priority, these kind of cases involving law enforcement conduct.
    On some occassions, Chief Beck tries to make it seem he can tell D.A. Lacey what to do. But that is simply Chief Beck posturing for the press to spoon feed to the public on the 6p.m. local newscast.
    If D.A. Lacey needs somebody to make the final call on what her office is going to do or is not going to do on one of these cases – that call will get made by Steve Cooley or Craig Lally.
    It will be 30 degrees and snowing in L.A. in July before that ever changes.

  • cliff smith
  • bluethru1994

    You have no idea what you are talking about. They were not undercover gang officers and they did not even work Newton Division. Not sure where you are getting your info, but sounds like you are just plain making stuff up. Stop spreading the lies and garbage talk. Yes, the officers got shot at. In fact they were ambushed by the thug Ford family and their gang member friends. Im done with this subject.

  • cutty sark

    This is why its so important to look at the completed reports on OIS 023-15.
    Those reports must have been completed because 023-15 appeared on the B.O.C. February agenda for adjudication in closed session.

    Let’s take into consideration your version of events; unfortunately, without the benefit of access to the information contained in F.I.D. and O.I.G. reports on OIS 023-15.

    Just prior to 6:00pm on 3/15/2015, an unmarked police car carrying 3 undercover narcotic officers is fired upon.
    Luckily, no one is severely wounded or killed.
    Any injuries are treated on the scene.
    However, they report one officer received shrapnel in his arm.
    Why not take him to a hospital at some point?
    At least the hospital can do a complete documentation of the injury – which is going to help the prosecution to make a good case against suspects.

    You are saying the Fords did the shooting.
    So why haven’t any Fords been arrested and charged?
    Why hasn’t a warrant been put out?
    Your officers get ambushed, they are lucky to come out alive and they can I.D. the shooters and then – nothing?

  • Pingback: Ezell Ford: Two Years Later |

  • bluethru1994

    Yep, that is the weak LAPD. They do not want to enrage the public any further. What a weak Department when they look out for their reputation amongst gang member thugs versus protecting their own. Can you believe they did not make an arrest when one of the officers actually identified one of the shooters. Beck needs to go!