As Juneteenth was celebrated yesterday, I began to feel somewhat optimistic. Every race has become so active and so involved… I thought to myself that maybe this is a turning point?? Maybe it was or maybe I’m just ignorant for thinking so. Anyways, last night I read about the death of Elijah McClain that happened August of LAST YEAR and was so deeply saddened.
Every death should be considered. Every death should be deeply thought about. Every death is equally as unfortunate and lately, most of them have been unjustified. However, I’ve noticed a lot of people like to state “there may be more to the story that we don’t know about”. That is somewhat of an ignorant statement especially since these same people scream “all lives matter”.
If that is the case and all lives matter, then every death should be a concern to you.
I could argue back and forth all day on why black lives matter and the significance of recognizing racism and injustice in our criminal court system, but I want to take a different route today. I want to share a story with you where there simply is no more to the story. I have hopes that this story may finally be an eye opener for some of you. This sad story just “is”.
Before I begin, please note that in the video above this young man is wearing a jacket and hoodie during the summer. This was not unusual for him due to his diagnosis of anemia nor is it a reason for any sort of physical action to take place. He was 23 years old, a massage therapist, a violinist, quirky, and volunteered his time at local animal shelters. This was a wholesome, good human.
On the night he was murdered, he was walking to a convenient store to grab something to drink (iced tea) with plans to walk back home. He was wearing a runners mask which he wore often due to being cold. A common symptom from having a diagnosis of anemia due to not having enough red blood cells circulating and carrying oxygen throughout the body.
Police were called for “suspicious behavior”. According to the officers when they stopped him, Elijah refused and stated, “I have a right to go where I am going” referring to him walking back home. The officer then grabbed McClain and stated for him to “stop tensing up”. On the audio footage released McClain states, “I am going home. Please let me go. I am an introvert. Please respect my boundaries that I am speaking”. This quickly escalated to the three officers wrangling McClain and taking him down. One camera goes dark during this time but audio can still be heard.
On the audio you can hear McClain cry “Ouch, that really hurts, I’m so sorry. I don’t have a gun. I don’t do that stuff.”
Elijah became unconscious in the the struggle and was then transported to the hospital. McClain went into cardiac arrest twice on the way there. Oh, and officers also demanded McClain to be injected with ketamine by paramedics at some point in all of this as well.
McClain, who weighed 140 pounds, was beaten and held to the ground by a carotid control hold around his neck (this technique was recently banned by the Aurora Police Department) while vomiting several times during the process. Another officer spotted a body camera being worn by another officer pointing at McClain to which the officer stated: “Move your camera, dude”.
Elijah McClain died August 30th, 2019 after he was taken off life support.
There isn’t more to this story. I encourage you to read every news article and watch any video you can to realize that or even challenge me. This investigation needs to be reopened. Period.
“The Adams County Coroner says they can’t determine whether Elijah McClain’s death was an an accident, was due to natural causes, or is a homicide related to the police department’s use of a carotid hold.” The autopsy report, dated November 7, said McClain’s cause of death is “undetermined.”
Please see the link above for ways to help. The family of Elijah McClain deserves justice and whatever sort of peace that is possible for them at this point.
For more support resources and updates please follow @justiceforelijahmcclain on IG