A Pasadena man has been charged with manslaughter after he made a 911 call in which he falsely claimed a gun-packing college student robbed him. The student, who turned out to be unarmed, was shot dead by a police officer responding to the call. The cop fired as Kendrec McDade, 19, made a motion toward his waistband—after Oscar Carrillo, 26, reported two armed men "put a gun in my face" when they stole his laptop computer, said cops. "Carrillo emphatically indicated a gun was involved. That is very important. It sets the platform for the mind-set of the responding officers," Pasadena Police Chief Phillip Sanchez said at a news conference yesterday.
According to a surveillance video, a man stole a backpack from Carrillo's car, while a second male who may have been McDade stood as lookout, police told the Los Angeles Times. But a laptop has not been recovered. Carrillo later told police he had lied about the gun and the confrontation. The shooting sparked concerns from the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. McDade was black; the officer's race and identity have not been revealed, but tensions are running high between police and black residents in McDade's neighborhood. "The bottom line is this young man was not armed when he was shot dead," said a spokesman for the Los Angeles Urban Policy Roundtable. "He is not a gangbanger or a drug dealer." McDade was a football star at his high school, and was described as a "good kid who was never in trouble," by his coach. (Read more Kendrec McDade stories.)