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Video released showing cop fatally shooting Ta’Kiya Young in Ohio

Police in a suburb of Columbus, Ohio released body camera footage on Friday of a police officer fatally shooting a pregnant black woman through the windshield of her car in the parking lot of a local supermarket. last week.

The shooting of the woman, Ta’Kiya Young, 21, led to protests and an Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigations investigation into police use of lethal force in Blendon Township, a town of about 10,000 people northeast of Columbus.

The Columbus branch of the NAACP has asked that the officer who the video shows opened fire as Mr. Young advanced be removed.

Ms Young’s family said in a statement on Friday that body camera footage showed her death was “not only preventable, but also a gross abuse of power and authority”.

Police showed the video to Ms Young’s father, grandmother and other relatives Friday morning before it was made public, according to family attorney Sean L. Walton.

According to Blendon Police, two officers were in the parking lot of a Kroger supermarket on August 24, assisting a woman who had been locked out of her car, when a Kroger employee approached one of them. them and told him that Ms. Young had stolen liquor bottles.

The video shows one of the officers approaching Ms Young, who was driving a car in a parking spot, knocking on the window and repeatedly telling her to get out of the car.

“They said you stole things – don’t leave,” the officer said.

Ms Young stays behind the wheel and tells the police officer she didn’t steal anything, the video shows.

During the confrontation, the second officer walks directly in front of the car, orders her to get out and then draws her gun as she turns the steering wheel, the video shows.

As Ms Young drives forward and appears to hit the police officer, he fires into the windshield, hitting Ms Young, whose car then slowly moves forward and crashes into the wall of the mall, the video shows.

Ms Young was taken to hospital, where she was pronounced dead, according to Mr Walton, who said Ms Young’s family believe her death should lead to a charge being brought against the police officer who shot her.

Ms Young, who lived in Columbus, was an aspiring social worker and mother of two boys aged 6 and 3, Mr Walton said. She was expecting a third child for November, he said.

In a statement released by Mr Walton, Ms Young’s family said: “As if the pain of losing Ta’Kiya wasn’t enough, we must understand that her unborn daughter was also deprived of life in this heinous act. . .”

Blendon Police Chief John Belford called Ms Young’s death a “tragedy in our community”.

“MS. Young’s family is understandably very upset and grieving,” he said in a statement. “While none of us can fully comprehend the depth of their pain, we can all remember them in our prayers and give them the time and space they need to deal with this heartbreaking turn of events.”

Chief Belford said he placed the two officers on paid administrative leave after the shooting, although the officer who did not fire his weapon has since returned to duty.

Chief Belford did not release the names of the two officers, saying they, along with Ms Young, were “potential victims of crime” whose identities cannot be released without a waiver under the Constitution of Ohio and a state law known as Marsy’s Law, or the Ohio Crime Victims Bill of Rights.

The officer who shot Ms Young was a “victim of an attempted mugging while driving”, Chief Belford said.

The officer standing next to the car had his hand and part of his arm in the window as Ms Young drove forward, making him “a victim of misdemeanor assault”, the chief said.

Chief Belford said he had asked the Bureau of Criminal Investigations to investigate the shooting.

A spokesperson for the office said Friday the investigation is continuing and the findings will be sent to the county attorney to determine if criminal charges are warranted.

Blendon Police also released a version of the body camera footage as told by former Delaware, Ohio County Sheriff and Delaware, Ohio Police Chief Russell Martin.

Chief Belford said he asked Mr Martin to “comment and provide contextual comments” on the shooting without drawing any conclusions as to its justification.

In this video, Mr Martin says the officer who shot Ms Young was in a “clearly vulnerable position” directly in front of the car and adds: “Police are trained to draw their firearms when threatened by lethal force, which may come from a gun, knife or vehicle.

Mr Walton, the Young family’s lawyer, said the officer violated department policy, which says officers must take reasonable steps to move out of the way of a vehicle instead of shooting .

He also said that according to a witness, Ms Young had not stolen anything from the store.

Blendon police referred questions about the theft charge to the Bureau of Criminal Investigation, which declined to comment, citing the ongoing investigation.

In the days following the shooting, protesters gathered outside the Kroger to express their outrage at Ms Young’s death and demand accountability.

“Whatever she has done, it does not justify her being shot and her unborn baby being killed,” Nana M. Watson, president of the Columbus branch of the NAACP, said in an interview Friday. “It’s tragic and it’s horrible for this community.”


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