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Family: Deputy shot unarmed teen in back

July 18, 2009 7:00:09 AM PDT
New questions are being raised over the death of a teenage boy, who was fatally shot by an L.A. County Sheriff's deputy in Compton. The boy's family claims he was shot in the back.An attorney for the family of Avery Cody Jr. says witness accounts are consistent and that the 16-year-old was not armed when he was shot on July 5.

The parents of Avery Cody Jr. say they want some answers from the L.A. County Sheriff's Department.

"My son ran for some unknown reason and he was gunned down," said the boy's father Avery Cody Sr.

A surveillance video of a portion of the confrontation between Cody and deputies was released Friday, but a Sheriff's department spokesperson says the video doesn't tell the whole story.

Video from a security camera shows the moments leading up to the teen's shooting death. While the family says it proves Cody Jr. was running away when he was shot, the L.A County Sheriff's Department says Avery Cody Jr. turned around and pointed a loaded hand gun at deputies off camera.

The video shows an object in Cody's left hand. Police say it was a gun, while the family says it was a cell phone. The Cody family denies he ever had a gun.

"I don't believe it one bit. Not one bit," said the teen's mother LaShay Meloncon.

A County sheriff's department spokesperson, Steve Whitmore tells us investigators uncovered a loaded .38 caliber handgun from the scene and that all the evidence corroborates with what the deputy reported.

Nevertheless, Whitmore said the shooting will be reviewed by the coroner's office, the district attorney, the homicide bureau, Internal Affairs and the office of independent review in order to compile an accurate and thorough understanding of what happened that day.

In another unrelated Sheriff's Department shooting July 10, a 22-year-old was shot in the back by deputies as he was running away. Deputies believed he was carrying a handgun, but the object in his hand turned out to be a cell phone.

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