Columbus Mayor: Ma’Khia Bryant Killing Is ‘Failure on Part of Our Community’

Bloomberg Quicktake: Now published this video item, entitled “Columbus Mayor: Ma’Khia Bryant Killing Is ‘Failure on Part of Our Community'” – below is their description.

The fatal police shooting of Ma’Khia Bryant, a Black teenager seen on video charging at two people with a knife, came within minutes of the verdict in George Floyd’s killing – causing outrage by some over the continued use of lethal force by Columbus police.

Local leaders pledged a transparent investigation on Wednesday and promised that all facts in relation to the case will be made public promptly.

Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther mourned the loss of the young victim at a news conference.

“Bottom line: Did Ma’Khia Bryant need to die yesterday? How did we get here? This is a failure on part of our community. Some are guilty, but all of us are responsible,” he said.

Officials with the Columbus Division of Police released footage of the shooting Tuesday night just hours after it happened, a departure from protocol as the force faces immense scrutiny from the public following a series of recent high-profile police killings that have led to clashes.

The girl was identified by Franklin County Children Services, which said in a release that the 16-year-old Bryant was under the care of the agency at the time of her death.

The 10-second clip begins with the officer getting out of his car at a house where police had been dispatched after someone called 911 saying they were being physically threatened, Interim Police Chief Michael Woods said at the news conference.

The officer then takes a few steps toward a group of people in the driveway when Bryant starts swinging a knife wildly at another girl or woman, who falls backward. The officer shouts several times to get down.

Bryant then charges at another girl or woman, who is pinned against a car.

From a few feet away, with people on either side of him, the officer fires four shots, and Bryant slumps to the ground. A black-handled blade similar to a kitchen knife or steak knife lies on the sidewalk next to her.

A man immediately yells at the officer, “You didn’t have to shoot her! She’s just a kid, man!”

The officer responds, “She had a knife. She just went at her.”

The race of the officer wasn’t clear and he was taken off patrolling the streets for the time being.

Bryant was taken to a hospital, where she was pronounced dead, police said. It remains unclear if anyone else was injured.

Woods said officers attempted life saving measures almost immediately after the shots were fired.

Woods also said state law allows police to use deadly force to protect themselves or others, and investigators will determine whether this shooting was such an instance.

Ohio’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation is now reviewing the killing following an agreement with the city last summer for all police shootings to be handled by the independent investigators under Attorney General Dave Yost’s office.

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