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Police Fatally Shoot Columbus Teen Ma’Khia Bryant

Taijuan Moorman Taijuan Moorman Police Fatally Shoot Columbus Teen Ma’Khia BryantPhoto via Wikimedia Commons.
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Update, April 21, 4:30 p.m.: Further information has been released by Columbus officials, including the name of the officer who shot Ma’Khia.

16-year-old Ma’Khia Bryant was fatally shot by a Columbus Division of Police officer in Southeast Columbus on Tuesday, April 20.

Ma’Khia Bryant

Reports of the shooting, in which family and neighbors say Bryant had called the police for help, came just moments before a guilty verdict came in the murder trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin in the May 2020 killing of George Floyd.

Body-camera footage was released by the division Tuesday night, with more footage released Wednesday afternoon. Officials said officers had responded to a 911 call of an attempted stabbing.

As officers arrived at the scene, officials said the video showed Ma’Khia lunging at two other young women with a knife before shots — four heard in the video — were fired.

The name of the officer who shot and killed Ma’Khia is Nicholas Reardon. The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigations is doing an investigation into the shooting.

Social media video from 10TV‘s Lacey Crisp show’s Bryant’s mother, Paula Bryant, telling reporters Ma’Khia “had a motherly nature about her. She promoted peace,” and that she was on the honor roll.

During the police press conference, Mayor Andrew Ginther said Tuesday was a “horrible, tragic day in the city of Columbus.” He said based on the body-camera footage, “The officer took action to protect another young girl in our community.”

The news comes eight days after another fatal Columbus police shooting, at Mount Carmel St. Ann’s Hospital in Westerville, which involved Columbus Police, Westerville Police and St. Ann’s hospital security.

According to reports, Columbus Police transported 27-year-old Miles Jackson to St. Ann’s the morning of Monday, April, 12 to be examined. Body-camera footage showed a struggle for a gun before shots were fired, later killing Jackson.

“BCI’s investigation into the officer-involved shooting that occurred Monday afternoon at St. Ann’s Hospital remains ongoing,” said Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost in a statement on the shooting investigation. “We can confirm through preliminary ballistic testing that the decedent had a gun and shots were fired.”

“BCI continues to interview witnesses and complete further forensic analysis to determine all of the facts. Partial facts only provide partial truth,” he added.

The killings of Ma’Khia and Miles Jackson come after a difficult 2020 for Columbus community members. The fatal police killings of Andre Hill and Casey Goodson Jr. are still close to mind for many. The murder trial of Adam Coy, for the December killing of Hill, begins Wednesday, April 28, 2021.

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