San Diego police probe claim that officer’s social media post made light of memorial for man he fatally shot
The department ordered a review of officer Jonathan Lucas after fielding questions about the incident, Sgt. Matthew Botkin told Fox News. Lucas was placed on administrative duty.
The accusation is connected to the death of Leonardo Ibarra, 25, who was fatally shot by Lucas and another officer June 27, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported.
Lucas and the other officer recognized Ibarra as a robbery suspect they’d seen on a flier and ordered him to stop walking. Ibarra ignored the command, and dropped a bag and ran, according to police body camera video footage. Authorities said he pulled a revolver out from his waistband and pointed it at one of the officers.
Both officers opened fire, striking him, police said.
The newspaper reported a screenshot of an Instagram post that appeared to show a makeshift memorial for Ibarra with candles and handmade signs, including one that reads: “Justice 4 Leo,” made the rounds on social media. The image is accompanied by face emojis showing laughing, open mouths and tears.
The image was shared by United Against Police Terror San Diego, an activist group that documents alleged police misconduct in the city. An anonymous Instagram user shared the photo with the group, a representative told the Tribune.
The user was following an account that posted the photo and said it belonged to the officer, the newspaper reported.
The police review seeks to determine whether Lucas posted the photo, Botkin said. He did not specify which disciplinary actions could be taken.
“There are varying degrees of discipline that could come but at this point. It’s a little too early in the game to begin discussing that on our end,” he said.