The family of 23 year old Elijah McClain has called for criminal prosecution of all the three officers involved in his violent arrest that resulted in his death. The Aurora police arrested McClain on August 23rd, 2019 and injected him with Ketamine that sent McClain into a cardiac arrest. He was taken off life support after 6 days on August 30th, 2019.
McClain was Unarmed and Posed No Threat
Mari Newman, his family’s attorney, told a press conference outside Aurora City Hall in Colorado that when Aurora police arrested McClain, he was unarmed, posed no threat, and was suspected of no crime.
The Adams County coroner is yet to complete the autopsy and it is still unclear as to what caused McClain’s death. However, it is suspected that the 500 milligrams of ketamine, which is a powerful anesthetic, had a big role to play. Newman claimed that McClain went into a cardiac arrest on his way to the hospital.
Family Lawyer Claims Police Brutality
In a statement released to the press, Newman claims that Elijah would still be alive if only the Aurora police had treated him as a human. The family was invited to hear the original 911 call and watch footage from the officers’ body camera by the Aurora police.
On the night of August 24, three officers approached McClain after receiving a call about a man wearing a ski mask waving his arms. The family told that McClain had a ski mask on since he suffered from a rare blood condition that always made him cold.
Police assert that McClain did not stop walking even when they asked them to stop and resisted arrest. However, Newman said that Elijah should not have been arrested in the first place since he was never accused of any crime but if you don’t listen to police, they may suspect something.
Laws Protecting Civil Rights in Colorado
There are multiple federal statutes with regards to police conduct. However, some of the more important civil rights protections come from constitutional amendments. It takes an experienced police brutality personal injury lawyer to understand the complexities involving a case and take the best approach.
Some of these fundamental constitutional protections include:
- The Fourth Amendment which protects victims from unreasonable seizures and searches, including police brutality
- The Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments, which guarantee that every individual suspected of committing a crime shall be dealt as per due process
- The First Amendment ensures protection against retaliation and freedom of speech
The right police brutality personal injury attorney can help victims file a lawsuit against the police officers and recover adequate compensation using 42 U.S.C. § 1983: Civil action for deprivation of rights.