Sharlton Wampler and Antonio Villegas, the officers who fatally shot Ezell Ford on Aug. 11, 2014, have filed a lawsuit against the city of Los Angeles claiming racial discrimination and retaliation from their superiors. Alleging they have been kept on desk duty since the shooting due to their race and Ford’s race.
Wampler is registered as Caucasian or Asian American depending on the paperwork you look at and Villegas is registered as a Latino. Ford was African-American.
Last year both officers filed complaints about their treatment and obtained “right to sue” information but said after they did the harassment became even worse.
Villegas and Wampler were members of an anti-gang unit that operated in the LAPD newton division when they shot and killed Ezell Ford. Although originally cleared of all wrong doing by police chief Charlie Beck: the Police Commission, a civilian oversight panel, rejected the Chiefs finding and determined that Wampler violated the department’s deadly force policy, concluding that there had not been enough evidence for the stop in the first place.
The irony of officers whose racial profiling as part of an anti gang task force resulted in the murder of an innocent man, now claim to have their professional lives ruined by discrimination.
The officers are seeking lost income as well as damages for physical, mental and emotional injuries. The evidence provided to prove the departments discrimination was a case where an African-American officer was found to be negligent in an on duty shooting but still promoted to a highly desired position within Los Angeles’s police force.