Two of the four homicides committed in Downey this year were committed by on-duty Downey Police Officers in October 2011. (The petition in memory of homeless man Manuel Vargas killed by two Downey Police officers October 12 can be found by placing "Downey" in the search field.) Mr. Nida was murdered by police with a machine gun.
The friends, family and supporters from around the world signing below petition for the immediate removal of Downey Police officers involved in killing Michael Nida and that they be appropriately charged for Mr. Nida's death. STOP the use of lethal force.
Michael Nida was the South Gate resident, husband, son, brother, uncle, nephew, coach, father of four and friend to many who was shot repeatedly and killed by Downey Police officers Saturday evening, October 22 at Paramount and Imperial Highway while his wife pumped gas and he went for cigarettes across the street. They had just come from his parents' home and were going out to celebrate his 32nd birthday. THIS IS THE SECOND KNOWN DEATH AT THE HANDS OF DOWNEY POLICE OFFICERS IN 10 DAYS.
Statements by Downey Police, the LA County Sheriff's Department Investigator (who says Mr. Nida was "acting almost like a caged animal"--do you see any problem with him doing the "investigation"?) and news reports state Latino Mr. Nida "fit the description" of African-American suspects in an ATM armed robbery that had taken place down the street. Although it's not clear why he was really approached, reports say the police detained Mr. Nida twice and even had him lying prone on the ground, but say they hadn't checked this "suspect in an armed robbery" for weapons even one time when he got up and ran again.
The Police action doesn't make sense. A person suspected of an armed robbery isn't checked for weapons or hand-cuffed? Whether he committed a crime or not (and the Downey Police now admit to shooting an unarmed innocent man, according to CBS news) it was a situation where officers were completely negligent in their duties and killed someone with a machine gun without attempting non-lethal force.
Who would catch a suspect in an armed robbery TWICE and not handcuff and pat them down for weapons? Racial profiling is suspected. Are we to understand Mr. Nida was shot to death because nobody checked for weapons and he might have had a gun? Even though no weapon was seen, Mr. Nida was shot to death with an MP-5 machine gun instead of using mace, a stun-gun, rubber-bullets, bean-bags--ANYTHING other than lethal force and death.
Stop these crimes of abuse of power and lawlessness by the Downey Police Department--and across the nation. If we are to think these officers acted in fear for life, then we must also know they weren't trained properly in appropriate procedures in securing a suspect. One officer who killed Mr. Nida remains on paid leave. Finish this investigation and charge involved officers with the death of Michael Nida. As government representatives, it is your duty--and ours--to hold the police to the highest standards.
Justice for Michael Nida and his family. Stop the use of lethal force.