Oakland moves to fire 2 officers after deadly, unauthorized chase: sources

The Oakland Police Department has moved to fire two officers who initiated an unauthorized chase that killed a bystander and then fled from the scene without providing medical aid, sources told KTVU on Tuesday. 

The two officers, Walid Abdelaziz and Jimmy Marin-Coronel, were relieved of their police powers more than a year ago for chasing a teenage driver along International Boulevard. That driver then struck a parked vehicle, which hit and killed a 28-year-old man and injured others nearby.

The officers were identified by sources and in a civil lawsuit. Their attorneys have not responded to KTVU's inquiries. 

It's not clear when the termination decision was made. 

But on Aug. 30, KTVU was denied access to their Internal Affairs findings, indicating for the first time that an investigation had been completed stemming from the chase and death on June 25, 2022. 

Through a public records request, the police department said there were "no responsive records" to return under a police transparency law, SB 1421.  

That law mandates that police departments make public all sustained findings where officers lied, used force that resulted in serious injury or death or committed sexual assault. 

A sustained finding is when Internal Affairs, or another body, determines an officer violated department policy, or possibly the law. 

It's not immediately clear why the city did not release the findings of the investigation.  


Oakland police chase suspect, flee scene after deadly crash, sources say

Two rookie Oakland police officers chased the driver of a Nissan 350Z they said was involved in a sideshow event, prompting a deadly crash before fleeing the scene without helping anyone who was injured, two sources with knowledge of the department told KTVU.

More than a year ago, KTVU reported that the officers – without authorization – decided to chase 19-year-old Arnold Linaldi, who police said was speeding away from a sideshow in a Nissan 350Z. 

Linaldi then crashed into a row of vehicles on 54th Avenue and International Boulevard, leading to the death of Lolomanaia "Lolo" Soakai of Hayward who was standing at a taco truck after a friend's graduation with his mom. His mother and cousins witnessed the crash and were also injured. 

Last June, then-Police Chief LeRonne Armstrong told reporters that he had "relieved the officers of police powers, as these very serious allegations are being investigated." 

Sources have previously told KTVU that the two officers left the scene without providing medical aid. 

One source said that the officers never came back to the scene. Another source said the pair showed up later to help, acting as if they didn't know about the crash. 

One of the officers can be heard saying something to the effect of "I hope they die," after he and his partner left the crash scene, according to one of the sources. The officers were referring to Linaldi. 

This information is also summarized in a federal civil lawsuit by Soakai's family members against the city of Oakland and the police department.

"This failure to summon medical care, as required by OPD training, allegedly caused plaintiff's injuries to worsen and Lolomania Soakai to lose his life," the federal suit against the city states. 

Linaldi was charged with vehicular manslaughter. A request to the District Attorney's Office on Tuesday was not immediately returned to see where the case stood. 

According to the civil lawsuit, the city of Oakland has denied any wrongdoing. 

The exact details of what happened and what the officers were have found to have done – or not done – have still not been made public.

The Oakland Police Commission's investigative arm is also conducting its own inquiry into the officers, which appears not to have been completed yet. 

The allegations being investigated by the commission include unauthorized pursuit, truthfulness, obedience to laws, reports and bookings, compromising criminal cases, interfering with investigations, reporting violations, general conduct, performance of duty and body-worn camera. 

Lisa Fernandez is a reporter for KTVU. Email Lisa at lisa.fernandez@fox.com or call her at 510-874-0139. Or follow her on Twitter @ljfernandez