Patrisse Cullors, the co-founder of Black Lives Matter, went to Instagram on Sunday to speak up for her 31-year-old cousin Keenan Anderson, who died after a confrontation with Los Angeles police.
“This is my cousin Keenan Anderson. He was killed by LAPD in Venice on Jan. 3, 2023. My cousin was an educator and worked with high school-aged children. He was an English teacher,” Cullors said as she posted a photo of her loved one. “LAPD has killed three people this year. One of them is my family member.”
Police said an officer approached Anderson around 3:38 p.m. on Jan. 3 as he was “running in the middle of the street and exhibiting erratic behavior” following a traffic accident, which, according to police, witnesses in the area said Anderson caused.
Authorities also said they “contacted Anderson, verbalized with him, and requested additional units for a DUI investigation.” The 31-year-old sat “at the northeast corner of Venice and Lincoln Boulevard for several minutes as the officer spoke with him,” police said.
Anderson, according to authorities, attempted to flee the scene when more police cars arrived, Vibe reports.
“Officers gave chase as Anderson ran eastbound in the middle of the street on Venice Boulevard,” police said, according to Vibe. “As officers contacted Anderson, he began to resist, resulting in a use of force. Officers struggled with Anderson for several minutes, utilizing a TASER, bodyweight, firm grips, and joint locks to overcome his resistance.”
After handcuffing Anderson and taking him into custody, police said Los Angeles Fire Department personnel responded and rendered medical aid to the 31-year-old before taking him to a hospital. There, he went into cardiac arrest and died, according to a Los Angeles Police Department media release.
“A minor traffic accident shouldn’t lead to death,” the Black Lives Matter Los Angeles chapter wrote on Instagram. “#KeenanAnderson is father of a 6-year-old boy, he is a committed high school English teacher, he’s a son, a brother, beloved partner, nephew, and cousin of #BlackLivesMatter cofounder Patrisse Cullors. LAPD stole him from them and from us by tasing him to death. As we uplift his Spirit, we demand justice in his name.”
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Cullors said, “Keenan deserves to be alive right now.”
“His child deserves to be raised by his father,” she wrote. “Keenan we will fight for you and for all of our loved ones impacted by state violence. I love you.”