OAKLAND, Calif. - Two Oakland police officers who were chasing after a sideshow suspect that caused a deadly crash have had their police powers revoked amid allegations of "irregularities and discrepancies" in their actions, the police chief said Wednesday.
"We identified potential misconduct, very serious potential misconduct," said Police Chief LeRonne Armstrong.
KTVU has learned from sources that two Oakland police officers are under investigation for allegedly chasing a suspect without permission - and then taking off after that suspect caused a crash that killed an innocent bystander.
Armstrong would not go into detail but said, "The additional information shows some irregularities and discrepancies involving two Oakland police officers."
Sources told KTVU the two officers decided to go after a Nissan 350Z that was allegedly involved in an illegal sideshow near 45th Avenue and International Boulevard at about 2 a.m. Sunday.
In a video posted to Instagram, the police car does not have its lights or sirens on. The Nissan reached speeds of up to 100 miles an hour. The chief has said the officers were unable to catch up to it and "disengaged" from it.
A short time later, the Nissan crashed at 54th and International, sending a parked car into a group of people standing near a taco truck.
Lolomanaia Soakai, 28, was killed. His mother and two other relatives were hurt.
The victim's family and sources told KTVU the two officers involved left the scene without helping those who were hurt.
Sources say body-cam video captured one officer making a comment about the suspect who crashed. The victim’s uncle Ian Finau seconded that.
"One of them yelled, ‘I hope he dies!' and they left," Finau said.
"For you guys to leave like that, was not cool at all for this community. That’s why the community has trust issues," Finau said.
The suspect in the crash, Arnold Linaldi, 19, has since made bail after being arrested on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter.
The chief has previously said the officers are on paid leave. But he's since gone further.
"Suspension of police powers, the removing of the badge and gun," Armstrong said.
"I’m angry because we lost an innocent soul," Finau said.
The victim's family has gathered at a memorial every day since the crash.
"It’s saddening because instead of worrying about him, there are people injured here. And if they’re out here to serve our community, this is what we can expect out of them," he said.
The family has set up a Gofundme to cover funeral expenses.