An Aurora, #Colorado, jury delivered a verdict on Monday regarding the case involving police officer Nathan Woodyard, finding him not guilty of reckless manslaughter and the lesser charge of criminally negligent homicide for the death of #ElijahMcClain. McClain was a 23-year-old unarmed Black man who passed away following an encounter with #police in 2019.
Elijah McClain's death stemmed from a distressing sequence of events where police officers subdued him and subsequently administered ketamine by attending paramedics. The incident sparked widespread public outcry and debates surrounding the handling of individuals during police encounters, particularly emphasizing the treatment of minorities.
Woodyard's acquittal on both charges marks a significant decision in a case that garnered national attention and intensified discussions about police conduct, racial bias, and the employment of force during arrests. The verdict has stirred varied reactions within the community, with many expressing disappointment and renewed calls for justice and police reform.
Speaking outside the courthouse shortly after the verdict was read, Weiser said he is thinking of McClain's mother, Sheneen McClain, "who has fought hard to keep her son's memory alive and to live on as a blessing."
"No mother should go through what she's gone through," he said. "We must all do what we can to stop the unlawful and unnecessary use of force that can result in people dying at the hands of law enforcement. As I've said before, only then will we have true justice and accountability."
Elijah McClain's tragic and unjust death at the hands of police underscores the systemic issues plaguing our society, including racial bias and excessive use of force. While the legal system may have failed to deliver justice in this case, it only intensifies our commitment to dismantling oppressive structures.
Our hearts and prayers continue to be with the McClain family.