On February 21, 2020, around 1:29 a.m., Southeast Patrol officers, on loan to 77th Division, responded to a radio call of unknown trouble. The female caller was requesting police at 78th Street and South Hoover Street. Upon their arrival, the officers encountered a female seated between two parked vehicles and attempted to ascertain if she was the source of the radio call. The female, later identified as Dorothy Kolen, was not fully engaging the officers in conversation, so the officers requested further information from Communications Division.
As the officers were speaking to Kolen, one officer attempted to assist her to a standing position. When the officer held Kolen’s arm, she pulled away and produced a kitchen knife with an approximate eight-inch blade. As the officers were backing away from Kolen, she walked towards them, armed with the knife, and an Officer Involved Shooting (OIS) occurred.
Kolen was struck by gunfire and transported by Los Angeles Fire Department Paramedics to Harbor UCLA Hospital, where she underwent surgery for her injuries. Kolen was later transferred to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and absentee booked for Assault with a Deadly Weapon (ADW) on a police officer.
No officers were injured during the incident and a knife was recovered at scene.
The officer involved in this OIS has been identified as Police Officer II Cecilia Molina, Serial No. 43054, assigned to Southeast Division.
LAPD’s specialized Force Investigation Division (FID) responded to the scene and began interviewing witnesses and collecting forensic evidence. A representative from the Office of the Inspector General and the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, Justice System Integrity Division also responded and monitored the investigation.
The complete investigation will be reviewed by the Chief of Police and the Board of Police Commissioners and the Office of the Inspector General to determine the thoroughness and accuracy of the investigation and whether the use of deadly force complied with the LAPD’s policies and procedures. Additionally, representatives from the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office who responded to the scene will review the subsequent FID investigation; evidence collected and witness statements to determine if the force used by the officer(s) violated any criminal laws.