A May 26 training accident in which at least one officer was present resulted in the death of an LAPD officer investigating gang rape. According to Bradley Gage, the attorney for the family, Houston Tipping, 32, sustained a number of injuries.
Gage stated Monday that Tipping was paralyzed after sustaining three broken ribs and a lacerated liver. He also suffered head injuries, head injuries, and a broken neck.
“He had subdural hemorrhages at three locations on his left side and three on his right side. It is impossible to believe that grappling could have caused these injuries as the LAPD portrays it.”
The LAPD responded with a report that showed how a training exercise could cause such damage. Tipping’s death was ruled a tragic accident. It turns out that Tipping was actually investigating four of his co-workers for gang rape, and was about to reveal some damaging information. His family now claims that Tipping’s death was murder.
Shirley Huffman, Tipping’s mom, filed a claim for wrongful death. She claimed that Tipping was repeatedly struck in the head so severely that he bled and that he had multiple neck breaks that caused his death.
LAPD officer Houston Tipping died after a training exercise during which he was beaten & slammed to the ground by other cops. Now his lawyer says at the time he died he was investigating a gang rape by 4 cops, at least one of whom was part of the exercise. pic.twitter.com/hah4hztyx2
— Rebecca Kavanagh (@DrRJKavanagh) October 4, 2022
The incident was not captured on video. Director of the Office of Constitutional Policing and Policy Lizabeth Rhodes gave a detailed explanation of what happened and why.
Interestingly, there is no video footage of the incident. Lizabeth Rhodes, director of the Office of Constitutional Policing and Policy gave a detailed explanation of the exercise and how it went horribly wrong:
She stated that Tipping’s injuries were immediately recognized by other officers during the training session. They “appeared struggling to talk” and first-aid efforts were initiated while paramedics were called.
During a June meeting with the Board of Police Commissioners, Michel Moore, Police Chief of the LAPD, also denied the claims of the family. He reiterated his position via a tweet on Wednesday:
An absolutely baseless claim that follows repeated falsehoods by this attorney. Officer Tipping lost his life following a tragic accident. His dedicated service deserves more. My deepest condolences to his family, friends & partners. https://t.co/rTNaukaimN
— Chief Michel Moore (@LAPDChiefMoore) October 5, 2022
Gage didn’t buy that explanation.
Tipping was beaten so severely that Tipping’s neck was fractured at various vertebral levels, according to his complaint. Gage stated that it was difficult to understand how Tipping could sustain so many serious injuries, other than being beaten to death. It’s impossible. It’s too many.
Gage was asked how Tipping’s mother copes with the tragedy. She said, “What can a mother do when her son was apparently beaten to death and killed? It’s a terrible loss.
The story instantly raised suspicions. Tipping’s possible whistleblowing and the explanation by the police chief raise more questions. It is vital that officers receive training. However, because of its nature, there is a risk to their ability to patrol the streets of LA. The LAPD should investigate their training methods as such terrible injuries should not occur in training. The family of Tipping will continue to file a claim. We may find out if this was an unfortunate accident or if something more sinister occurred.