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Controversial Pasadena police shooting gets outside review

March 27, 2012 |  6:34 pm

Pasadena police Chief Philip Sanchez asked a Los Angeles Sheriff's Department watchdog agency to investigate the shooting of a 19-year-old unarmed man by two of his officers Saturday, an incident that has sparked community concerns.

 Kendrec McDade was shot by two Pasadena police officers as they pursued him and another man who were believed to have ransacked a car and pointed a weapon at the car owner about 11 p.m. Saturday night.

Sanchez asked Michael Gennaco who heads the L.A. County Office of Independent Review to help conduct an investigation into the fatal shooting.

The deadly incident began when a car owner said he was returning from a taco truck at Orange Grove Boulevard and Summit Avenue when he confronted the men rifling through his car, police said. The man told police that one suspect flashed a handgun before taking a laptop from the car. The man initially backed off, but then pursued the men as they fled and called police on his cellphone.

One officer on foot and another in a patrol car spotted McDade and shot at him after he appeared to reach into his waistband, according to Pasadena police Lt. Phlunte Riddle. He was taken to Huntington Memorial Hospital, where he died.

Police have yet to find a weapon or the laptop in the area.

McDade's mother hired an attorney Tuesday. And the American Civil Liberties Union called for an independent probe. A 17-year-old was charged with burglary, theft and being an unregistered gang member.

“I just want to make sure justice is served for my son,” said Anya Slaughter, who was surrounded by photographs and plaques from her son’s days as a football player at Azusa High School. “I’m very devastated. He was my world.”

--Adolfo Flores and Richard Winton