La Mesa Grandmother Out of Coma After Being Hit by Police Projectile at Protest – Calls for Officer to Be ID’ed and Charged

by on June 3, 2020 · 2 comments

in Civil Rights, San Diego

In all the initial stories and reports of what happened in La Mesa at the George Floyd protest in front of the police department, the subsequent bank burnings and lootings, and then the clean-up afterwards, a key story of a La Mesa grandmother almost being fatally injured or blinded by a police projectile wasn’t present.

Now, it has emerged. Leslie Furcron, a 59 La Mesa resident was hit between the eyes by a police rubber bullet and severely knocked momentarily unconscious. She was on her cellphone when the incident occurred and was not engaging in anything but peacefully protesting. Bystanders rushed her to the hospital where she was at first placed in an induced coma. Police did not call her an ambulance or otherwise respond to her injury

Furcon has now come out of the coma and her family called Tuesday for the officer involved to be publicly identified, fired and charged with attempted murder.

There is a gruesome Cellphone video that has gone viral showing Furcron lying on the ground, with blood streaming down her face, amid shouting and screaming that she was killed. The rubber bullet hit her right between her eyes. Those bullets weigh 40 grams and travel at 200 to 300 feet per second. A shot placement diagram reviewed by he media shows the upper torso and head as “potentially lethal” areas.

Furcron remains hospitalized and may lose one of her eyes, according to her family and their attorney. They held a news conference outside La Mesa City Hall to demand that the officer who fired the rubber bullet, which struck her in the forehead, be held accountable.

Dante Pride, an attorney representing the family, said he’s reviewed “dozens” of videos and spoken with scores of people present at Saturday’s protest and has not seen any evidence that Furcron was violent or did anything to justify being shot.

Pride said Furcron was holding up her cellphone recording the protest when an officer opened fire. He said other protesters were also being peaceful and received no warning from law enforcement before “the tear gas came and the bullets rained down.”

Pride said he believes the involved officer purposely aimed at Furcron’s head, in contradiction of the La Mesa Police Department‘s rules regarding use of force, which he said holds that projectiles be aimed below the waist.

It’s uncertain whether the officer who opened fire was with the La Mesa Police or another agency, though Pride said he believes it was a La Mesa officer.

A representative of the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department said the regional agency had no role in the shooting.

“It did not involve a sheriff’s deputy,” sheriff’s public affairs Lt. Ricardo Lopez said Tuesday afternoon.

Two of Furcron’s sons, Ahmad and Azim, said their mother is a law-abiding La Mesa resident. Ahmad Furcron demanded that police hold their own accountable, as they would any other citizen.

“If I commit a crime, I’m going to jail. No ifs, ands, or buts about it. Whoever that was needs to stand and (be) held accountable for it,” Ahmad said. “That’s attempted murder. My mom was shot between the eyes, 59 years old, protesting. She doesn’t have the right to protest?”

Pride called on the general public to demand that law enforcement officials release the name of the officer, and also asked anyone who was at the protest to send in videos of the events surrounding the shooting.

He said if the department is unable to determine which officer fired the projectile, the incident still highlights issues with police practices regarding crowd dispersals.

“We need something different,” Pride said. “There should never be a case where a police unit can fire indiscriminately into a crowd and not know what they’re shooting at and who they’re shooting at.”

A GoFundMe page has been created for Furcron, with more than $110,000 raised by Wednesday morning. Pride said they expect her medical bills to near $1 million when all is said and done. Times of San Diego


{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

B. Blyth June 4, 2020 at 8:10 am

It is a bad idea to throw things in peaceful protest.


Frank Gormlie June 5, 2020 at 1:00 pm

SACRAMENTO – Alarmed at numerous reports that protesters in recent days have been seriously injured by rubber bullets fired by police officers, a group of California lawmakers said Thursday they will introduce legislation to set clear standards for when the projectiles can be used.
Four lawmakers proposed revising current policy on use of the projectiles in response to incidents reported throughout the country by those who have been protesting the death of George Floyd, who was killed when a Minneapolis police officer used his knee to pin Floyd’s neck to the ground.

Injured protesters include a Dallas man who lost a left eye after being hit with a non-lethal projectile, according to the Dallas Morning News.
In La Mesa, Leslie Furcron, a 59-year-old grandmother, was hospitalized after being shot in the head with a beanbag at the La Mesa PD station.


Leave a Comment

Older Article:

Newer Article: