Eliza McClain's death attracts international attention

Eliza McClain's death attracts international attention
Nearly a year after Elijah McClain's death following a dispute with the Aurora Police, lawmakers in Colorado and law enforcement were instructed to make a national and international call for an investigation.

The 17th Judicial District Attorney's Office has received more than 10,000 phone calls and 2,000 emails, requesting that three officers be charged with McClain's death. Television presenter and comedian Ellen DeGenners also tweeted about the case, demanding justice for McClain.

CBS4 first reported the death in August 2019 following a dispute between McClain and officers in Aurora. Someone reported to 911 that McClain was "acting strange" and wore a ski mask while leaving the house. The caller stated that McClain was unarmed and committed no crime.

When officers contacted McClain, they told him that they had done nothing wrong. I was coming home from buying tea at a convenience store.

McClain told officers that he had done nothing wrong, officers attempted to stop him and physically caught him. McClain was eventually approached by one of the three officers and placed on a choke. McClain is heard on body camera video telling officers that he was not protesting.

He also told them that he was an introvert, a vegetarian, and that he could not hurt a fly.

The body cameras of several officers were ejected. At one point, after noticing that a body camera is on the floor, one officer is heard saying to another, "Move your camera, mate."

"I am amazed at how long it has taken the world to realize this case," said McClain family lawyer Mari Newman.

McClain was unarmed, committed no crime and wore a ski mask for his personal comfort. His family said that due to some previous problems, it was not uncommon for McClain to wear a mask to provide comfort and reassurance.

McClain received a high dose of ketamine from paramedics, which was later determined by a coroner to cause two heart attacks.

In November, Dillon Thomas of CBS4 staged a protest outside the Aurora Municipal Center. An estimated 25 to 35 people attended, and they asked the police department to arrest the officers involved. Even as CBS 4 and Thomas continued to pursue the case, the focus seemed to fade from those not directly affiliated with McLain.

However, after the deaths of Bryon Taylor and George Floyd, McClain's story was suddenly prompted by spotlights. Within weeks, McClain's story was shared online millions of times.

More than two million people have signed a Change.org petition for charged officers.

"It is very disappointing that it was finally realized for the people of Colorado to murder someone across the country." But it is happening, ”Newman said.

McClain's story has since become a major topic of discussion on social media, particularly on platforms such as Instagram, which appeal to younger users.

Celebrities including television presenter Ellen DeGeneres tweeted and voiced their support for the investigation of the three officers involved in McClean's arrest.

The 17th Judicial District Attorney's Office told Thomas that he had received more than 10,000 phone calls about the case and more than 2,000 emails within a few days.

"It should not take millions of people to sign a petition, and it should not get the attention of international media, elected officials to do their job," Newman said.

After weeks of contact with people from all over the world tracked by CBS4 in locations as far away as Portugal, many elected officials in Colorado are now intervening. Governor Jared Polis tweeted that he assigned a team to investigate the possibility of investigating the case.

Newman said McClain should not be remembered as a man who was breaking the law, as he had done nothing wrong at the time when police responded. Newman hoped McClain would be remembered as a kind young man who died unnecessarily at the age of 23.

"He was an angel among men. He played the violin with the animals at lunch, to await adoption, so that he would not feel alone. This is not a man who should have approached the police, let alone murdered in cold blood like him, "Newman said. The public sees that dishonesty, looking through that effort to avoid liability . " Now he stands up to say that Arora needs to stand up and do what is right. "

The Aurora Police Department did not fire the officers involved, and returned them to service. Newman said that, until the final investigation, all three still serve on the streets of Aurora.

On Wednesday, Aurora Mayor Mike Kaufman called a special meeting of the city council to vote to authorize an independent investigation into the matter.

Governor Jared Polis also responded to recent protests on social media: "I have news of several residents of Colorado who have expressed concern about the investigation into the death of Elijah McClain." As a result, I have ordered my legal council to examine what the state can do and we are evaluating the next steps. "

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