Another Senseless Death of a Black Man: Why Did It Take So Long to Launch Probe?

Please do not reply if you are unwilling to watch the video or read the transcript. Replies like, “I’m not bothering because it’s from Democracy Now” do not provide anything substantive to this conversation.

Why do you think it took so long for this case to surface? Why do you think these officers haven’t yet been convicted?


They covered this topic on CNA Editor’s Desk this week. Did you hear it by chance?

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No - is that covered in the Gloria Purvis interview that I haven’t yet heard?

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I believe it is the one after that, it’s titled “Small talk and big ideas.”

I really enjoy that show…

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I’m just curious if those who worked so hard to tarnish other victims of this brutality will attempt to do likewise with this young man. His death was senseless and brutal. These officers have yet to face justice, and the city of Aurora has (at least at the time of this broadcast) not taken meaningful action.

Can we now finally admit there’s a problem of police brutality against African-Americans?


Firstly i see no reference in the bodycam videos to race. I also see no brutal beating of the man but the officer using his weight to keep the suspect pinned to the ground.

In a country of over 300 million people i am angered that a handful of (black) people who die in contested circumstances each year is supposedly proof of a racist police force. I also see a double standard in that white people dying in custody do not seem to be contested by certain media on an equal basis.

There were many allegations of improper behaviour by the police from media people involved. These should be looked into (perhaps they already have) but if we are going to have an informed opinion we need to hear the description of what happened by the people to whom the media are making allegations against.

Until that happens we have the media side of the story only.

Now that side of the story may (or may not) be somewhat correct on important points. But in the name of justice, the other side has to be presented. No one can or should convict people based on media programs only.

Quite rightly that is not how the government departments or justice system should work.

Cops not being held accountable till there’s a national outcry sounds on-brand so far.


I kind of figured I’d get the you-can’t-prove-it’s-racist response. I said that there’s a problem with police violence against African-Americans. That’s well-documented. Whether or not you wish to attribute it to racism is your prerogative. Given this data, however, I think it’s a reasonable hypothesis. Racism occurs passive-aggressively, so of course no one will overtly own it - on or off camera.

We actually have the body cam footage. That’s the most objective presentation of the story you’re going to find. Body cams can’t lie . . . which is a pity for the officer who, while killing Elijah McClain, said to his cohort, “Move your camera, dude.”

Watch the body cam footage, available on the link, and tell me what “the other side” is.


Your title is incorrect/misleading. The Guv is starting ANOTHER investigation. This means it’s at least the SECOND probe into the shooting.

I went to another source

Last August, police officers in Aurora, Colorado, approached 23-year-old Elijah McClain as he walked home from a convenience store. The Aurora Police Department later said that a 911 caller had reported a “suspicious person” in a ski mask, and that when officers confronted McClain — who was not armed and had not committed any kind of crime — he “resisted arrest.” In the 15 minutes that followed, the officers tackled McClain to the ground, put him in a carotid hold, and called first responders, who injected him with ketamine. He had a heart attack on the way to the hospital, and died days later, after he was declared brain dead.

Body Cam: the ADP did not release it to the public until late November, months after McClain’s death. In the footage, an officer can be heard admitting McClain had done nothing illegal prior to his arrest; another accuses McClain of reaching for one of their guns. McClain, meanwhile, can be heard asking the officers to stop, explaining that they started to arrest him as he was “stopping [his] music to listen.” He gasps that he cannot breathe. He tells them his name, says he has ID but no gun, and pleads that his house is “right there.” He sobs, and vomits, and apologizes: “I wasn’t trying to do that,” he says. “I just can’t breathe correctly.” One of the officers can also be heard threatening to set his dog on McClain if he “keep[s] messing around,” and claiming he exhibited an extreme show of strength when officers tried to pin back his arms.

Very little of the officers’ protocol can be seen, however, because all of their body cams allegedly fell off during the arrest. But if you watch the video from about the 15-minute mark (warning: the footage contains violent and upsetting content), you’ll see someone pick up the body camera and point it toward McClain and one of the officers, before dropping it back into the grass. Around 15:34, one of the officers seems to say, “Leave your camera there.”

Sounds like the cops used excessive force and then the paramedics killed him.

District Attorney Dave Young informed Aurora police chief Nick Metz in a letter that, “Based on the investigation presented and the applicable Colorado law, there is no reasonable likelihood of success of proving any state crimes beyond a reasonable doubt at trial. Therefore, no state criminal charges will be filed as a result of this incident.”

The DA is probably correct considering current law that protects police from inept execution. Perhaps we need consequences that are consequential but less severe than murder beyond a reasonable doubt.

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ran out of space

I think it’s a great supporting case of the need for reform but I don’t understand what you mean about ‘surfacing’. The DA was likely correct that he couldn’t prove a crime beyond a reasonable doubt.

We need consequences that also fall below jail when cops mess up, So few are convicted because the bar is too high, so we need a lower bar with less sever consequences included in reforms. Far more need to lose their chosen career. Maybe if they had insurance like doctors, specific to their history, police departments would be more willing to let go bad actors.


The other side is obviously the side of the officers and the medics who are accused of giving the suspect too much chemicals to subdue him. It is also the side of the authorities who investigated them.

Snippets of body cam with an overlaid accusative media voice is far from objective.

As far as racism is concerned you need to prove there is antipathy. Especially watching the insane events of the last few weeks, you definitely need to prove antipathy if you are asking the question of why the officers have not been convicted and bring race into the accusation. Watching the full video there appears to be no race antipathy at all.

(From the full video) ----> In the initial scuffle the body cam seems to have fallen off and one of the officers is heard saying ‘he went for your gun’. The suspect resisted arrest and seemed very agitated and at times rambled incoherently. Several officers mentioned that it appeared he was on drugs. It should be noted that the officers seem calm and called for back up straight away which speaks against any intention to hurt the suspect.

All of these tragedies seem to involve the resisting of arrest and i think one thing that needs to change is the education to teach people that they must respect the authority of police. Secondly the suspicion of drugs in the suspects system seems to be a factor. The other thing is that some sort of restraint is needed that will incapacitate suspects without putting strain on them.

When the suspect is on the ground he was apparently continually fighting restraint and the officers are telling him to stop fighting them. One of the officers is also heard to say that the suspect appears to be on some drug and that he has incredible strength which another officer agreed with.

I didn’t see anything from the full video which would convict the policeman. Whether the medic was negligent or not is something that can’t be ascertained from the video.


A couple of questions for you @blackforest.

  1. Are you also talking about the many more senseless deaths of black men, killed by other black men in gang violence? Or is it just the ones by the ‘racist’ police that bother you?

  2. Are you also doing topics on the senseless deaths of white men killed by the police? Or are they less important to you?

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The government has ordered a “new” investigation. So there has already been at least one investigation.

I don’t see that there can have been much delay therefore.

Racist or not, police brutality still needs investigation.

If there is indeed racism, it should surface during the course of the investigation.

The police should not be allowed to get away with murdering anyone of any race.


I agree. If they kill somebody unjustly (key word), they shouldn’t be allowed to get away with it.

The trouble is these killings are never framed as police brutality in general. Only the police killings of black people are highlighted in the media, while police killings of white people, are almost never spoken about. Believe me, I have seen footage of white men being killed by police completely unjustly, and yet, we never see protests about this.

We could be barking up the wrong tree by prematurely concluding that the reason for police brutality is systemic racism.

A deep investigation needs to be done nationwide on police departments to get to the root of this recurring problem. To focus prematurely on racism is to miss the forest for the trees and will fail to solve the problem. This means more people will die at the hands of the police.

I have a hunch that attempts at these investigations will be obstructed by the police themselves.


What I don’t get about this story is the whole ketamine thing. Is that S.O.P. for paramedics to inject ketamine into subjects to subdue them? It can’t have been done at the young man’s request…can paramedics just inject people with narcotics like that?

Seriously asking anyone who knows because I don’t.

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From a legal standpoint, if this man died from being given too much ketamine by the paramedic, then the paramedic is the one who needs to face charges of homicide or criminal negligence.

If the police followed their protocol and the man was fighting them off because he was scared or whatever, and the police didn’t show any intent to kill him, it’s hard to charge them with anything. It’s not like George Floyd who likely died because of the cop’s direct action in kneeling on his neck, or even like Rayshaud Brooks who died from officers’ bullets.

My guess is they still won’t find anything in this latest review to hang a charge on those cops.


In many places, yes. It’s supposed to stop the person from struggling and thrashing, which can injure himself or someone else.

That’s frightening.

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