Residents of a South Los Angeles community are demanding answers after local sheriff’s deputies shot and killed a teen Sunday night, reportedly leaving the body uncovered for hours.
Officials confirmed 16-year-old Anthony Weber was fatally shot around 8:30 p.m. near the 1200 block of West 107th Street, CBS Los Angeles reported. Authorities said deputies were called to the area after receiving reports of a young man brandishing a gun. Responding officers claimed the teen had the gun tucked into his waistband before he fled, prompting an on-foot chase.
Deputy Wally Bracks, the spokeswoman for the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department, said deputies opened fire when Weber turned to face them.
“The subject was struck several times in the upper body by gunfire and collapsed at the location,” she said.
Weber was pronounced dead at the scene. No weapon has been recovered.
The deadly shooting prompted angry and distraught neighbors to swarm the scene as they pressed authorities for answers. According to CBS Los Angeles, a lady was heard screaming that her son was dead while a man was detained for yelling and facing off with officers.
“Weren’t nobody shooting back and forth,” neighbor Regina Banks told the station, disputing accounts that Weber shot at deputies first. “They were just shooting.”
Friends and family of the teen, who confirmed he was a gang member, said they were also upset because Weber’s body was left uncovered for hours in front of the complex where he was shot.
Department Capt. Chris Bergner said officers were trying to maintain security in the area but believe that at some point, someone snuck in and took the gun officers believed they saw. It was during the mayhem as angry neighbors flooded the courtyard that they think the handgun went missing.
“While waiting for backup, and trying to control the situation, it’s believed that somebody may have taken the gun that was in the possession of the juvenile at the time of the incident,” Bergner said during a news conference. ” … Deputies were pretty articulate in describing specific features of the weapon that led us to believe they did see a gun.”
The deputies weren’t wearing body cameras at the time of the shooting.
Weber’s family held a candlelight vigil Monday night to honor the teen’s life, NBC4 reported.
“I need it to be known that my son was a good son,” his mother Demetra Johnson said. “He had the biggest heart and was a wonderful father; he has a 9-month-old daughter, Violet, who lights up whenever he walked into the room.”