*A wrongful death lawsuit is being filed in Los Angeles Superior Court (Case No. TBD) on behalf of Carol Jefferson and Thomas Jefferson, parents of Levert Leon Jefferson, who died after being asphyxiated by the Executive Director and security personnel of the Center for Advanced Learning.
On December 10, 2019, Levert Jefferson was running down the public sidewalk in front of the Center for Advanced Learning, which is located on 4016 S. Central Avenue in Los Angeles. Mr. Jefferson was clearly someone needing medical or mental health assistance. Named defendants in the lawsuit, Executive Director, Aadil Naazir and his school security personnel, Michael Nowell, aggressively accosted Mr. Jefferson, placed him in a chokehold, and pressed their full body weight on him in an apparent attempt to detain him. Mr. Jefferson was 56 years old, 125 pounds at 5’11.” He was frail in comparison to Naazir and Nowell. Mr. Jefferson was unarmed, made no threats and posed no harm to Defendants.
Toni Jaramilla, a Los Angeles civil rights attorney and activist states:
“The Center for Advanced Learning claims on its website, that its vision and purpose is to teach its students ‘personal responsibility and respect for all human beings’. Yet, they showed no compassion for a man who clearly needed help and medical attention. They showed instead, reckless disregard of a human being’s life.”
Co-counsel on the case and civil rights attorney, Jim DeSimone comments, “The autopsy report reveals that Mr. Jefferson was subjected to blunt force trauma to the head and lack of oxygen to the brain. Based on witness statements who saw what happened, we believe this was caused by defendants placing Mr. Jefferson in a chokehold and placing their full body weight on Mr. Jefferson who was struggling to breath. The report further states that the manner of death is homicide. Once again, we have another Black man killed through asphyxiation. We intend to hold the perpetrators accountable.”