A raucous Los Angeles Police Commission meeting was adjourned early today, after a woman threw an unidentified powder substance at LAPD Chief Charlie Beck.
The woman was identified as Sheila Hines-Brim, an aunt of Wakiesha Wilson, according to LAPD spokeswoman Detective Meghan Aguilar. Wilson died while in LAPD custody in 2016.
According to witnesses, Hines-Brim threw the substance toward Beck at about 10:15 a.m. during the meeting in downtown, and some of it got onto the chief. As she was walking away, Hines-Brim shouted, “That’s Wakiesha,” suggesting to some that the substance was Wilson’s ashes.
However, Wilson’s mother, Lisa Hines, cast doubt on that interpretations speaking to reporters after the meeting.
“I don’t know if her ashes was thrown at him,” she said. “I didn’t see nothing. I didn’t see any of that.”
Hines-Brim was arrested on suspicion of misdemeanor battery on a police officer, while Melina Abdullah, a leader of the Black Lives Matter movement in Los Angeles who was present, was also arrested after she allegedly making contact with another officer.
Police and fire department hazardous materials crews responded, later determining the substance was not dangerous, Aguilar said. However, the substance was not immediately identified.
Police have said Wilson was found hanging in her jail cell while in LAPD custody in 2016. The coroner’s office ruled it to be a suicide, and the city later paid Wilson’s family $298,000 to settle a lawsuit over her death.
Activists still argue that Wilson was not suicidal, and also condemn the department for failing to notify Wilson’s
City News Service contributed to this story.