Black Lives Matter protesters say the husband of the Los Angeles County district attorney pointed a gun at them Monday morning as they demanded a meeting with her the day before a primary election for her seat.
Photo: Damian Dovarganes/The Associated Press
Photo: Damian Dovarganes/The Associated Press

Video shows husband of LA district attorney pointing gun at Black Lives Matter protesters

A man identified as the husband of Los Angeles District Attorney Jackie Lacey was captured on camera footage Monday pointing a gun at Black Lives Matter activists opposed to his wife’s reelection, according to video of the incident circulating on social media.

About 30 protesters were gathered Monday outside the couple’s home in Granada Hills, Los Angeles, demanding a community meeting amid the fast-approaching Tuesday primary,  where Lacey is in a heated competition with two other candidates.

Police shootings have become a critical focus of the race.

KCAL CBS Channel 9 Los Angeles reported that demonstrators were in the driveway with banners, signs, bullhorns and chairs — and calling for Lacey to come outside for a face-to-face meeting. 

Police had been called to the scene after the incident and were standing by, according to the station and several other news reports.

No arrests have been reported.

The Los Angeles Times reported that dozens of protesters arrived before dawn outside Lacey's home.

 

Jamil Smith, a reporter for Rolling Stone magazine, was one of the first to confirm on Twitter that the man wielding the gun in the video was  Lacey's husband, David Lacey.

Jackie Lacey later apologized for the incident, according to The Associated Press.

An LAPD spokesperson later confirmed that police were investigating.

One of the people who re-posted the disturbing video was Jasmyne Cannick, a candidate for Los Angeles County Central Committee, who said the Black Lives Matter activists were protesting Lacey in front of her house when her husband opened the door and threatened to shoot them.

She followed that up with a tweet clarifying the situation, saying the protesters had “been trying to meet with their elected District Attorney for years. She hasn’t met with the Black community since 2016.”

One version of the video shows the man emerge from inside the front door of the residence with the gun raised toward persons off-camera. 

The man has the gun in his right hand while pointing his finger at someone with his other hand. 

NewsOne.com identified the person speaking to David Lacey as Dr. Melina Abdullah, a co-founder of Black Lives Matter LA and California State University professor who has been known to protest outside Lacey’s office for years, according to reports. 

NewsOne.com said she is the one who can be heard on the video asking the man in a low tone, “Are you going to shoot me?”

“I will shoot you,” the man retorts, with his weapon raised.  “Get off of my porch!”

“Can you tell Jackie Lacey that we’re here?” Abdullah asked, explaining who they were.

“I don’t care who you are, get off of my porch right now,” the man then said. “Right now,” he demanded. “We’re calling the police right now.”  

The man then goes back inside and closes the door.

The confrontation lasted a little over a minute. The voices on the video appeared tame.

Afterwards, someone off-camera exclaimed, “We’re here for the community meeting, Jackie Lacey!” and moments later the video ends.

The L.A. Times said the group was at Lacey's home to protest her refusal to meet with black activists and organizers in South L.A.

Los Angeles reportedly leads the nation in fatal officer-involved shootings.

Lacey, a Los Angeles native who first took office in December 2012, has come under fire for more than 500 reported fatal police shootings under her tenure, reports say.  Lacey has declined to bring charges in most if not all of the cases, according to reports.

In one notable case, Lacey refused to bring charges against LAPD officer Clifford Proctor in the 2017 fatal shooting of an unarmed homeless man on the Venice boardwalk, disregarding LAPD Chief Charlie Beck, who recommended she indict the officer.

The protest group claimed Lacey never delivered on a promise to meet with them, “So we decided to have the meeting in front of her house,” Abdullah told the L.A. Times. 

Abdullah said they heard a gun cock after they approached the front door of the home in the 17900 block of Mayerling Street. 

Lacey's campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Tuesday’s vote is being seen as something of a referendum on police accountability.

Lacey is a two-term incumbent and the first African-American and first woman to become district attorney in Los Angeles. Reports say she initially had strong support from the black community, which has waned in the years since. 

Twitter users have been calling out Lacey for not prosecuting police officers charged with murder. 

Patrisse Cullors, a co-founder of the Black Lives Matter movement, recently tweeted, “Jackie Lacey promised reform but has continued…fueling mass incarceration and destroying black and brown communities in Los Angeles.”

There’s a measure on the ballot that would reduce the number of L.A. jail inmates.

Lacey is facing tight competition from San Francisco’s former district attorney, George Gascón, and Rachel Rossi, a reformist candidate.

Mother Jones magazine described the election as “the single most important DA race in the country.”

— This is a developing story. Please return to AJC.com for updates.

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