08:04 GMT07 May 2021
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    A mentally-ill homeless woman who was on Skid Row when officers from the Los Angeles Police Department shot and killed a homeless Cameroonian immigrant is facing life in prison after picking up an officer’s baton that was dropped in the scuffle.

    Trishawn Cardessa Carey’s arrest took place as Charly Keunang, a Skid Row resident, was killed by police, in an incident that was captured on camera by a witness and sparked protests across Los Angeles.

    During the scuffle, one of the officers dropped a baton. Carey, picked it up, which can be seen in the videos.  She does not appear to hit or threaten anyone with it, lawyers argue, but she was quickly tackled by police. She was subsequently charged with resisting arrest and assault with a deadly weapon.

    "Is possession of a baton an assault? No," a lawyer representing Carey stated at yesterday's hearing.

    Carey has been imprisoned ever since her arrest in March, held on $1 million bail.  On Wednesday, her bail was lowered to $50,000 after a judge called her prior bail amount “way too high.”

    She is facing life in prison over the encounter, thanks to California’s three-strikes law.  Carey has had, by all accounts, had a rough life, including going into prostitution at the age of only 14.

    "The legal basis appears to me to be a distraction or cover-up of the killing of a man by the police,” her lawyer commented.

    The judge has ordered that if Carey does make bail, she enter into a local rehab program. The founder of the program testified at a previous hearing that if she joined the program, "maybe, just maybe [Carey] would get the first break of her life." 

    Related:

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    Police Seek Rookie LAPD Officer on Murder Charges
    LAPD Probe Finds Los Angeles Cop in Ezell Ford Shooting Acted Improperly
    Tags:
    Police Shooting, LAPD, Trishawn Cardessa Carey, Skid Row, Los Angeles
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