TWO photos allegedly show cops from the Aurora Police Department posing inappropriately near the memorial site where Elijah McClain passed.
The officers were suspended and are currently under investigation.
Here is more about the alleged photo scandal.
Who is Jaron Jones?
Jaron Jones was an Aurora police officer who recently resigned.
A photo featuring several officers mocking the death of Elijah McClain in his memorial site have surfaced.
The officers were reenacting the carotid restraint used on McClain before his death.
The department’s Interim chief Vanessa Wilson said that an internal affairs investigation was recently completed in regards to the photos taken in October of 2019.
“This investigation will be publicly released in its entirety promptly upon its conclusion,” said Wilson.
“This will include reports, photographic evidence obtained, (officers’) names, and my final determination which can rise to the level of termination.”
Why did he resign?
Officer Jones was put on administrative leave when the department learned of the photos last week, and officials said Thursday he has resigned.
The US Attorney’s Office for the District of Colorado, the Denver Division of the FBI and the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division said in the statement that they were “aware” of reports that officers had been placed on leave.
“We are gathering further information about that incident to determine whether a federal civil rights investigation is warranted.
“We will have no further comment until both of those reviews are completed,” read the statement.
According to reports, Chief Wilson sent out pre-disciplinary letters to the officers involved, including her recommendations for punishment.
The officers have 72 hours to dispute the claims.
The McClain family attorney released a statement obtained by the local station KDVR saying: “Just when we thought the Aurora Police could not be any worse, they somehow find a new low.”
“They tampered with their body cameras to hide the evidence.
“They exonerated the killers.
“They deployed riot police and spewed pepper gas on peaceful protesters at a vigil of mourners playing the violin.
“And now this,” concluded the statement.
What happened to Elijah McClain?
McClain was walking home from a local convenience store on August 23 2019 after picking up some tea.
According to McClain’s family, he was anemic and preferred to wear a ski mask to keep his face warm while he was walking.
The Aurora Police Department received a call from a civilian about a “suspicious man” walking around with a mask.
911 dispatched police officers who placed McClain in a chokehold upon their arrival to the scene.
Similarly to the George Floyd case, McClain told the police officers that he “couldn’t breathe” while one of the officers reportedly threatened him for struggling.
“He is laying on the ground vomiting, he is begging, he is saying, ‘I can’t breathe,'” described Mari Newman, the McClain family lawyer.
“One of the officers says, ‘Don’t move again. If you move again, I’m calling in a dog to bite you.'”
Twitter users claim Elijah’s last words were: “I’m an introvert. I’m just different that’s all. I’m so sorry. I don’t have a gun. I don’t do that stuff.
“All I was trying to do was become better. I’ll do it…You all are phenomenal.
“You are beautiful. And I love you. Try to forgive me. I’m sorry.”
In an attempt to subdue him, paramedics issued McClain a dose of ketamine.
The drug caused the young man to go into cardiac arrest on his way to the hospital.
McClain fell into a coma.
Three days later, he passed.
The investigation of McClain’s death was inconclusive.
Denver 7 News stated, “…they couldn’t determine whether McClain’s death was an accident, was due to natural causes, or is a homicide related to the police department’s use of a carotid hold.”
At the time, the officers were placed on a brief leave of absence, but then returned to the department as the investigation finished.
What cops were involved?
The identities of the cops in the photo have yet to be released until the investigation is completed.
However, the officers involved in the death of McClain have reportedly been named as Nathan Woodyard, Jason Rosenblatt, and Randy Roedema.
“The only thing that would make me feel better about as a mom would them to have life in prison and those that watched are the police officers that did not deescalate, they need to lose their jobs and never become…” McClain’s mom said.
The death of McClain has sparked outrage around the country, in addition to other racially-charged deaths.
Demonstrations have happened in almost every state, including one in Colorado for McClain which was stormed by riot police who pepper sprayed protesters.
According to reporter Mark Sallinger with 9News, protesters were peacefully playing the violin – which was the instrument McClain used to calm kittens when they “moved the fence barrier blocking Aurora PD headquarters.”
This ultimately provoked the officers to make their way forward, claiming it was an unlawful assembly.
Where is the Justice for Elijah petition and how can I sign it?
You can sign the petition to demand justice here.
It has garnered over 4.1million signatures since its inception.
View more information: https://www.the-sun.com/news/1076366/elijah-mcclain-death-jaron-jones-aurora-colorado/