Police Killing of Double-Amputee Anthony Lowe Sparks Outrage From Family, Activists

Police Killing of Double-Amputee Anthony Lowe Sparks Outrage From Family, Activists

The fatal January 26 police shooting of a 36-year-old, double-amputee in southeastern Los Angeles is the latest killing of a Black man to set off protests over excessive and lethal violence by U.S. law enforcement.

According to CBS News, activists and the family of Anthony Lowe Jr. took to the Huntington Park Police Department headquarters Monday to condemn the killing. “They murdered my son in a wheelchair—with no legs,” Lowe’s mother, Dorothy, said.

In a Jan. 30 statement, the Huntington Park Police Department said its officers were responding to a stabbing on the afternoon of Jan. 26.

The stabbing victim described his attacker as a man in a wheelchair. The attacker allegedly “dismounted the wheelchair, ran to the victim without provocation, and stabbed him in the side of the chest” with a “12-inch butcher knife,” before fleeing the scene in the wheelchair.

In the search for the suspect, police found Lowe, a few blocks away, holding a knife. Huntington Park police said officers attempted to detain the man, but that he ignored verbal orders and “threatened to advance or throw the knife at the officers.” Huntington Park police said officers tasered the suspect twice.

“The suspect continued to threaten officers with the butcher knife, resulting in an officer-involved shooting,” the statement read.

The L.A. Sheriff’s Department said Friday the suspect was shot in the “upper torso,” and “was treated on scene by Los Angeles County Fire Department paramedics and pronounced dead.”

The police officers involved were placed on paid administrative leave per protocol, according to Huntington Park police.

The Huntington Park Police Department, Homicide Bureau of the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department, and the L.A. County District Attorney’s Office are investigating the shooting.

Yatoya Toy, Lowe’s sister, told the Los Angeles Times that her brother’s legs were amputated last year after an altercation with law enforcement in Texas.

The mother of one of Lowe’s children, Ebonique Simon, described him to CNN as a “loving, caring father.” She added that Lowe was “dealing with a lot of depression” over the loss of his legs.

A spokesperson for the family told CBS News that Lowe was undergoing a mental health crisis when he was shot.

Cliff Smith, an organizer with the Coalition for Community Control Over the Police, called on Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón to prosecute the officers involved. “We want specific justice,” he said at the press conference outside local police headquarters Monday.

Dorothy Lowe said, “This situation is worse than George Floyd. When these videos go out, it’s going to be all bad.”

Last week, five police officers were charged with second-degree murder for beating 29-year-old Tyre Nichols in Memphis—leading to his death days after and protests nationwide.