Elijah McClain in happier days (photo by his mother) |By John Frank, Yahoo | A Colorado grand jury returned a 32-count indictment against police officers and paramedics in the 2019 death of Elijah McClain, a 23-year-old unarmed Black man.
Driving the news: The grand jury charged each of the three officers and two paramedics with manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide.
Why it matters: McClain’s death at the hands of police and paramedics drew renewed attention and a national profile last summer as the Black Lives Matter movement gained momentum and in the wake of George Floyd’s May 2020 murder.
Catch up quick: McClain, a massage therapist, pleaded with officers to release him after being stopped and restrained without legal cause, telling them, “Let go of me. I am an introvert. Please respect my boundaries that I am speaking.”
● Officers put McClain in a chokehold and paramedics injected him with 500 milligrams of ketamine in suburban Denver before he suffered cardiac arrest and was eventually declared brain dead. He was taken off life support on Aug. 30, 2019.
● Aurora police had no legal basis to stop McClain and their use of a carotid chokehold led state lawmakers to ban law enforcement from using the restraint technique.
Between the lines: The decision announced Wednesday came 14 months after Colorado Gov. Jared Polis called for Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser to investigate the death and appointed Weiser as a special prosecutor.
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