Around the time a Minnesota jury declared an ex-cop guilty for last year’s death of George Floyd, a 15-year-old black girl was fatally shot by police in Columbus, Ohio, sparking another Black Lives Matter protest.
Columbus PD officers responding to a 911 call about an “attempted stabbing” around 4:45 pm Eastern time on Tuesday. The caller said a female was trying to stab them, and hung up, police said, according to local media. One person was wounded in an “officer-involved shooting” and transported to hospital in critical condition, where she died at 5:21, police said.
“This afternoon a young woman tragically lost her life,” Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther tweeted, urging residents to “remain calm” and allow the Bureau of Criminal Investigations to “gather the facts.”
— as they do with all CPD-involved shootings. We will share information that we can as soon as it becomes available. I’m asking for residents to remain calm and allow BCI to gather the facts.
— Mayor Andrew Ginther (@MayorGinther) April 20, 2021
Ginther’s calls apparently fell on deaf ears, as protesters began gathering at the site of the incident in eastern Columbus.
Protesters also gathered outside the Columbus PD headquarters.
A family member identified the girl to reporters as Makiyah Bryant, 15. Hazel Bryant, who introduced herself as Makiyah’s aunt, said she was a “good kid” who “had issues.”
Bryant told the Columbus Dispatch that Makiyah lived in a foster home on Legion Lane and got into a fight with someone else. She said the girl had a knife, but dropped it before she was shot multiple times.
“She was 15 years old. She didn’t deserve to die like a dog in the street,” Bryant said.
WARNING: Video contains strong language. A woman near Legion Lane says her niece was killed earlier tonight after an officer involved shooting. Police still haven’t confirmed victim pic.twitter.com/wpx9Wowtwl
— Alexis Moberger (@alexiswsyx6) April 20, 2021
Someone named Tay Jones wrote on Facebook that she had witnessed the shooting, but said Bryant had a knife “because somebody tried to jump her,” and that the white police officer never told her to put it down before shooting.
Another account posted on Facebook also claimed Bryant used a knife to defend herself against several attackers.
A 15 year old girl in Columbus Ohio was in an altercation in which she drew a knife in defense. Officers were called on to the scene, saw she had a knife in her hand and before even telling her to drop the knife, she’s shot four times. She’s the one who called. https://t.co/LdV2U3YdKdpic.twitter.com/3Kods5W9kq
— Alysé⁷ ♥️ 🎫 (@vmonsparadise) April 20, 2021
Mayor Ginther said that the incident was captured on body camera. As of Tuesday evening, the footage has not been released to the public.
The incident unfolded as national attention was focused on Minnesota, where a jury declared that former police officer Derek Chauvin was guilty of murdering George Floyd, an African-American man whose death sparked months of violent protests across the US last summer.
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