Activists pushing for the arrest of Ed Buck in the death of a young black man from a drug overdose in his apartment posted signs in the yard of his Laurel Avenue apartment building on Monday and called Buck out after spotting him inside the building’s courtyard.
“You are predator, you are a deviant,” shouted one of the activists at Buck, who also stopped one person coming out of the building and people walking on the sidewalk to complain about Buck.
Jasmine Abdullah of the Pasadena chapter of Black Lives Matter suggested a demonstration in front of Buck’s apartment building at a meeting on Saturday of the L.A. County Human Relations Commission.
Buck didn’t respond to the demonstrators and returned to his second-floor apartment whose windows appeared to be covered entirely with white bedsheets. Almost all of the signs were removed as of yesterday.
The L.A. County Sheriff’s Department currently is investigating the circumstances surrounding the death of Gemmel Moore, 26, in Buck’s apartment on July 27. In an initial investigation, the L.A. County Coroner’s Office deemed the death an accident caused by a meth crystal overdose. Drugs and drug paraphernalia were found in Buck’s apartment. Moore’s mother and others claim that Buck paid to fly him from Texas to Los Angeles, where he used to live, and to come to his apartment and do drugs. Buck has not responded to the allegations, although his lawyer, Seymour Amster, has denied them. Amster says Buck was merely offering Moore, a self-confessed sex worker, his support.
After protests from Moore’s mother, LaTisha Nixon, and other family members and supporters and calls from L.A. City Councilmember Mike Bonin and West Hollywood City Councilmember Lindsey Horvath, Sheriff Jim McDonnell announced that the case would be investigated and the L.A. County District Attorney has granted limited immunity to other sex workers willing to testify about their experience with Buck.
Since Moore’s death allegations of Buck engaging other young black men in drug use have emerged. Several of those young men have given their stories to Jasmyne Cannick, a media strategist who is working with Moore’s family. Cannick has published those on her website along with screenshots of messages exchanged on Adam4Adam, a gay hookup app, and of text messages to young black men from a phone that carries Buck’s number.
Buck is well-known locally for his advocacy for a ban on the retail sale of fur products. The City Council adopted that ban in 2011 after it was introduced by then new Councilmember John D’Amico, for whom Buck campaigned. Buck also has been a regular donor to other national, state and local Democratic Party candidates.