They called him “Paz,” and they called him “Ebony.” They didn’t know one from the other, but they all died. The name could only have been a blur to those who were unaware of these men. But on Wednesday, a Waukegan man shot and killed by the police was identified as 38-year-old Feliz “Paz” DeLeon.
DeLeon was fleeing Waukegan Police early Wednesday morning when he allegedly rammed into a vehicle, police said. Officers began pursuing DeLeon, and shot him after a high-speed chase. DeLeon died at the scene.
The incident has left many in DeLeon’s hometown outraged. The local newspaper, the Waukegan Sun-Times, reported that DeLeon’s family said he had struggled with mental illness and drugs.
Demonstrators marched in his name in Waukegan, Illinois, on Wednesday, blocking traffic on the street, and shouting slogans and criticizing the Waukegan Police Department for their conduct.
Five more protesters were arrested near downtown Waukegan on Wednesday, said Wade Smith, who was among those who was detained.
“If this were a white man who had attacked police, we would be tearing down that city and tearing down that police department,” he said. “But this is not. They tried to throw the word ‘criminal’ at us, but it’s what we call it, unfortunately. He never hurt anyone and they had the rest of his life.
“And now they murdered him,” he said.