Arturo Cabrales , 22

Los Angeles, California
March 07, 2012

Agencies: Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department California LASD

Cause of death: Not Yet Known

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Last updated: over 5 years ago


Arturo Cabrales, a 22-year-old Latino, was shot and killed by law enforcement officers Wednesday, March 7, in the 10300 block of Lou Dillon Avenue in Watts, according to Los Angeles County coroner's records.

The incident began about 3 p.m. when detectives from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department conducted a traffic stop near 103rd and Hickory streets, police said.

Cabrales got out of the vehicle, allegedly with a gun, and began running. At least one detective followed on foot and the shooting occurred, the Los Angeles Police Department said.

The details surrounding the shooting were not immediately available. The LAPD said a weapon was recovered.

Coroner’s records show Cabrales suffered several gunshot wounds to his body.

The area, which is near the Jordan Downs housing project, is patrolled by the LAPD's Southeast Division. It was unclear what the Sheriff's Department was doing in LAPD territory.

The fatal conflict began with Paez approaching the property of Cabrales, demanding entry without the requisite warrant. Following Cabrales’ objections, Paez addressed him using “foul, offensive and intimidating language.” Paez further attempted to inform Cabrales that a warrant was not required, and proceeded to force his way through the gate of the Cabrales home. At that point, Cabrales turned to run, prompting Paez to open fire as he fled. Paez fired his weapon an untold number of times – and struck Cabreles with a total of six shots.

Following the incident, it was alleged that Paez and other deputy officers had devised a cover-up of the shooting, including a false report of the details of the altercation. According to Paez’s fellow deputy Julio Martinez, who is alleged to have participated in an elaborate falsification of events, Cabrales was the original aggressor and possessed a firearm during the conflict – which he allegedly tossed over a fence while fleeing.

Despite the fact that a firearm was discovered on a neighboring property, the medical examiner’s testimony revealed it would have been physically impossible for the decedent to have thrown the gun to that location.

In addition to the current wrongful death lawsuit, Paez and Martinez are also being prosecuted by the County of Los Angeles for a previous case in which they allegedly planted multiple guns and filed a false police report. Prosecutors in that criminal case allege the sheriffs planted guns inside a marijuana dispensary, which resulted in a six month sentence for a man arrested at the scene. Prosecutors further assert that surveillance video at the scene contradicts reports filed by Paez and Martinez, and substantiates claims that the guns were planted.

Ellis Law believes that the officers in the instant case committed the worst acts of Los Angeles police brutality in shooting Cabrales.  The firm is also very interested in what appears to be a trend in the behavior of these two deputies.

“They are being charged with filing false police reports, number one. And also with planting a gun,” one of Calabres’ attorneys told CBS Los Angeles. “And in this case, we believe a gun was planted and we believe that false reports were filed.”

Legal Action

July 2014 Settlement $1.5million