August 30, 2017, the family of Jonathan Salcido filed a tort claim — the initial phase in a $15 million lawsuit — seeking justice, demanding police training on de-escalation, and demanding training in assisting people with mental illness.
On the morning of May 4th, 2017, 27-year-old Salcido was scheduled to see his psychiatrist to continue treatment for a mental illness that he had lived with since age 18. When his behavior became erratic, his mother Jasmin called 911 for assistance Police officers responding to the call wrestled Jonathan to the ground and instead of helping, they handcuffed him, piled on top of him and smothered him to death before his mother’s eyes.
Family members and friends attended an emotional press conference on August 30, 2017, held in front of the Whittier Police Department. His father Gary Salcido stated, “…he was killed by the very people who were supposed to protect us.”
Jonathan’s mother said he was “a human being with hopes and dreams that needed help”.
Sister Jennifer Chavez, joined by sister Janine Carr, stated, “I’m here because I want justice for Jonathan.”
HSR attorney Dan Stormer called upon the Whittier Police Department to train its officers to de-escalate, and demanded that “the officers who took Jonathan’s life be prosecuted for their cruel excessive and unnecessary use of force” and HSR attorney Cindy Panuco stated that Jonathan’s family believed they could treat his illness and that his death was a “heartbreaking loss of a son and a brother.”
Jonathan is listed as the 403rd person to be killed by police in the United States in 2017 (http://killedbypolice.net). Since his killing, 397 more people have died at the hands of police. Meanwhile, in a July 2017 address, President Trump told law enforcement officers, “Please don’t be too nice.”