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Colorado officers under investigation after troubling photos surface of them near Elijah McClain memorial

McClain, a 23-year-old Black man, died after an officer placed in a chokehold.

7/1/2020 5:46:00 AM

Colorado police officers under investigation after troubling photos surface of them near Elijah McClain memorial.

McClain, a 23-year-old Black man, died after an officer placed in a chokehold.

Elijah McClain protest draws thousands in ColoradoThousands of people took to the streets in Aurora, Colorado, demanding answers about the death of the 23-year-old who died after a police encounter last year.Byron Smith/Getty ImagesBlack man was placed in a chokehold

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last summer and later died, prompting their chief to order an immediate internal investigation that she said could lead to their termination.Interim Aurora Police Chief Vanessa Wilson issued a statement late Monday night saying she has pulled multiple officers from street duty and made the probe into photos depicting them near a

memorial for Elijah McClaina"top priority."Wilson said she placed the officers on paid administrative leave"in non-enforcement capacities" after being informed on Thursday of the allegations stemming from the photos that were brought to the attention of the department's Internal Affairs bureau by an Aurora police officer.

"I was apprised of allegations reported to Internal Affairs by an Aurora Police Officer alleging multiple Aurora Police officers were depicted in photographs near the site where Elijah McClain died," Wilson said in her statement.Elijah McClain, an unarmed Black man who died days after he was subdued by three policemen and injected with a powerful sedative in August 2019, poses in an undated photograph in Aurora, Colo.

Elijah McClain, an unarmed Black man who died days after he was subdued by three policemen and injected with a powerful sedative in August 2019, poses in an undated photograph in Aurora, Colo.Family Photo/Handout via ReutersShe added that she ordered an"accelerated investigation" that was completed Monday evening and plans to soon publicly release the results of the probe"in its entirety."

"This will include reports, photographic evidence obtained, officer’s names, and my final determination which can rise to the level of termination," Wilson said.She did not immediately provide details of what the photos showed the officers doing.

Sheneen McClain, Elijah's mother, provided a strongly worded statement to ABC News, saying,"It’s bunch of smoke, Aurora Colorado has failed in providing justice to its citizens by allowing corrupt officials and police officers to roam the streets. I am not surprised that these photos are showing up now because the whole department is corrupt. Killers being protected by cowards and cowards being protected by killers. Aurora Colorado’s senior officials should be ashamed of their leadership, it seems like they did a lot of following others to hell!"

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A joint statement issued by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Colorado, the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division and the Denver division of the FBI said it was aware of the photographs and it was"gathering further information about that incident to determine whether a federal civil rights investigation is warranted."

The development came as the Aurora City Council has scheduled an emergency meeting for Tuesday night to discuss why police in riot gear on Saturday used batons and pepper spray on apparently peaceful protesters at a park, some playing violins in honor of McClain, who also played the instrument.

String players perform during a violin vigil for Elijah McClain in Washington Square Park in New York City, June 29, 2020. McClain was a 23-year-old Black man who died while in police custody after he was stopped while walking home in Aurora, Colorado last August. (Photo by Byron Smith/Getty Images)

String players perform during a violin vigil for Elijah McClain in Washington Square Park in New York City, June 29, 2020. McClain was a 23-year-old Black man who died while in police custody after he was stopped while walking home in Aurora, Colorado last August. (Photo by Byron Smith/Getty Images)

Byron Smith/Getty ImagesColorado Gov. Jared Polis announced on Thursday that he was appointing a special prosecutor to reinvestigate McClain's death and file charges if"the facts support prosecution." The FBI, U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Colorado and the DOJ's Civil Rights Division also said it had been gathering facts for a"potential" civil rights investigation since 2019.

McClain was walking home in Aurora, a suburb of Denver, after buying iced tea at a corner store on Aug. 24, 2019, when he was stopped by police, Mari Newman, an attorney for McClain's family, told ABC News last week.He was wearing a ski mask on a warm night -- which Newman attributed to him getting cold -- when a person called 911 at 10:30 p.m. to report him acting"sketchy," according to an audio recording of the 911 call released by the Aurora Police Department.

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The caller told a 911 operator that a man, later identified as McClain,"has a mask on" and"he might be a good person or a bad person." The caller went on to say no weapons were involved and when asked if he or anyone else was in danger, the caller said"No."

MORE: From Eric Garner to George Floyd, 12 black lives lost in police encounters that stoked mass protestsPolice body-camera footage showed McClain walking on the sidewalk when three officers approached him, with one telling McClain multiple times to stop. But McClain, who was apparently listening to music at the time, continued to walk.

According to the body-camera footage, an officer put his hands on McClain, saying,"Stop tensing up." McClain replied,"Let go of me" and told the police that he was"just going home."The officers took McClain to the ground and placed him in a carotid control hold -- which involves an officer placing his arm around a person's neck, restricting the flow of blood to the brain from the carotid arteries, according to a letter from Dave Young, the district attorney for Adams and Broomfield Counties, to then-Aurora Police Chief Nicholas Metz.

String players perform during a violin vigil for Elijah McClain in Washington Square Park in New York City, June 29, 2020. McClain was a 23-year-old Black man who died while in police custody after he was stopped while walking home in Aurora, Colorado last August.

String players perform during a violin vigil for Elijah McClain in Washington Square Park in New York City, June 29, 2020. McClain was a 23-year-old Black man who died while in police custody after he was stopped while walking home in Aurora, Colorado last August.

Byron Smith/Getty ImagesMcClain, who was placed in handcuffs, is seen in body-camera footage at one point throwing up after the struggle with officers while he is on the ground.According to Young's letter, paramedics called to the scene said McClain remained combative and possibly suffered from a condition known as excited delirium. McClain was later administered, by paramedics, what Newman alleged was an"excessive dose" of ketamine, which is used by medical practitioners and veterinarians as an anesthetic.

MORE: Special prosecutor will investigate 2019 death of 23-year-old Elijah McClain while in custodyAfter McClain was put in an ambulance, he went into cardiac arrest, according to police. He died several days later.A pathologist who conducted an autopsy was unable to conclude that the actions of any law enforcement officer caused the death, Young said in a statement he released last week.

MORE: How 2 doting dads, George Floyd and Nicholas Farah, died in the hands of policeWhile Young said McClain’s death"was both tragic and unnecessary," he declined to file criminal charges against the officers, saying,"In order to prove any form of homicide in the State of Colorado it is mandatory that the prosecution prove that the accused caused the death of the victim."

“Based on the facts and evidence of this investigation I cannot prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the officers involved in this incident were not justified in their actions based on what they knew at the time of this incident," Young said. Read more: ABC News »

Key word' later died' not due to chokhold. The real reason they dont want the cops there is because it's illegal for a man to suck another man's dick in public. Same song, over and over. Luckily, America finally heard the music and is currently, breaking down the lyrics. JusticeForElijah Undermining the police. But I bet you still call them for help though

poll DefundThePolice ?

Colorado Police Officers Under Investigation For Photos At Elijah McClain MemorialThe police department in Aurora , Colo., is investigating several officers who posed for photos at a memorial site for Elijah McClain — near where he was forcibly arrested last summer. The officers are on administrative leave with pay. Sheriff should resign! Change starts from the top! They must be fired if it is True! Aurora..you are a pathetic city. Stormtroopers for a peaceful concert and.. now this

Aurora police officers under investigation after being photographed near where Elijah McClain diedAfter an allegation that they were photographed 'near the site where Elijah McClain died,' the officers have been placed on administrative leave with pay. I spent many years in order to be selected in DV lotteries,finally i got it for DV2020 but,the proclamation has suspend us. It start as my American dream but, it is now my children's dream. We all look for justice,not else. dv2020 liftthetravelban DV2020winners With pay? Were these the officers attacking and pepper spraying families and children in the park, watching violin performances? I could not read the full story due to the event details. Trial coming looks like.

Colorado Police Investigate Officers Over Photos Taken Near Elijah McClain SiteThe police in Aurora , Colorado, opened an investigation into multiple officers after photos surfaced showing them near where Elijah McClain died last year after the police put him in a chokehold, the chief said Yeah, I bet that'll turn up jack shit. Abolish the police. This drip drip drip of uncovering other African American deaths at the hands of police depts that have been able to keep them hidden is an even greater scandal. If we ever needed a McCarthy, it is now. We need to find them all, expose them all, and make change. Blklivesmatter

Colorado officers placed on leave after photos near site of Elijah McClain's death Aurora officers placed on paid leave after allegations that 'multiple' police officers were depicted in photos near the site where Elijah McClain died. I can only imagine what these photos contain if they haven’t been released yet Devil worshipping democrats are still pining for a race war because they know that they are going to get their own asses handed to them by the American people on November 3rd. I'm not attacking violin players or killing innocent black kids and I don't even get to go on a free vacation right now

Is Ketamine the New Police Weapon Against Black Lives?In dozens of recorded cases, officers have instructed paramedics to inject civilians with ketamine, using safety as a justification. In reality, though, the sedative is often being abused just like guns and tasers. angelinachapin reports angelinachapin why is any officer permitted to instruct a PARAMEDIC on how to treat a person? angelinachapin It’s a shitty paramedic that would listen to an officer with no medical training angelinachapin Why are the police doing that? Wasn't there a whole slew of promising research surrounding Ketamine for mental illness?

Cops in Riot Gear Stormed a Violin Vigil for Elijah McClainFootage from the event shows a group of quiet participants holding signs and observing as a few violinists perform at dusk — and then the arrival of a group of officers in riot gear, charging into the crowd 'Peaceful Protests' ... yeah, THAT has been overused and misused a lot lately. Yes we all know. Looting, vandalism, violence and arson is peaceful This is the most insane reaction to a very small group of protesters I have seen! AND some were playing violins❗🎻🎻🎻🎻Who was the dispatcher for this SWAT squad❓'Attention ALL units, we have a tiny MOB of wild violin players waving their Bows around'.🎻