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Moments after the announcement of the verdict of the Derek Chauvin trial for the murder of George Floyd, another killing happened in Ohio at the hands of a police officer. In Columbus, Ohio, a police officer shot and killed a black teenage girl who was holding a knife. However, later bodycam footage revealed that the woman who was shot was attempting to cut two other black women with her knife. Here’s what we know so far about this incident of police brutality.
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Black teenage girl shot and killed by a police officer, was trying to knife two black women, moments before Derek Chauvin verdict
The Franklin County Children’s Services and the mother Paula Bryant identified the girl as Ma’Khia Bryant. Local law enforcement authorities revealed that she was 15 years old. However, the FCCS claims that Ma’Khia was in fact 16 years old. They said in a statement:
Ma’Khia was a foster child, who was under the care of Franklin County Children Services. This was a tragic incident and FCCS is continuing its involvement with the family throughout this difficult time.
The incident occurred merely 30 minutes before Derek Chauvin’s guilty verdict was delivered in the killing of George Floyd. The jury found Chauvin guilty on all 3 counts of second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter. Floyd’s family attorney Ben Crump tweeted on the occasion, after finding out about Ma’Khia Bryant’s shooting:
As we breathed a collective sigh of relief today, a community in Columbus felt the sting of another police shooting.
On Tuesday, the police received a call at 4:32 pm, detailing that “females were there trying to stab them and put their hands on them” as revealed by Columbus Interim Police Chief Michael Woods. When the officers arrived, an officer approached the group on the driveway of their home. The video shows that the teenager quickly moved on a girl with her knife, after which the officer shouted “Hey, hey, hey, hey. Get down!”. However, Ma’Khia Bryant then moved on to another girl with her knife. That was when the officer shouted, “Get Down, Get down, Get down, Get down”. Then, the officer fired four shots toward the teenager, after which she collapsed on the ground. Another police officer then attended to the girl for injures, after which they called the medics. Here’s the video:
Related: Ma’Khia Bryant: Police Training & Alternate Outcomes When A Police Officer Does Nothing
Columbus Mayor and Social media reacts
Sadly, this isn’t the first incident of a fatal police shooting in Columbus. Recently, the indictment of former Columbus police officer Adam Coy took place for the fatal shooting of 47-year-old Andre Hill, a black man. And With Derek Chauvin being convicted, the outrage of this shooting was inevitable. The Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) in the Ohio Attorney General’s Office will conduct an investigation of the officer involved in the shooting, as they took him off the street. Furthermore, the Mayor of Columbus, Andrew Ginther, said:
We know based on this footage, the officer took action to protect another young girl in our community. But a family is grieving tonight and this young 15-year-old girl will never be coming home.
Moreover, social media erupted as well as news of Ma’Khia Bryant’s killing hit the news. The court’s verdict on Derek Chauvin for George Floyd’s murder had already emotionally charged several users, which made social media more polarized on the incident. The hashtag #MikayahBryant started trending on Twitter, as many users tweeted in her support, saying:
However, many people highlighted the fact that Ma’Khia was actively stabbing two other black women before getting shot. Therefore, many users rushed in to defend the police officer. But, others pointed out that the officer could have deescalated the situation without using such excessive force.
So, what do you think of the shooting? Should the officer have used such excessive force or not? Let us know in the comments below.