Ohio Authorities Release Bodycam Footage Of Officers Fatally Shooting Pregnant Black Mother
On September 1, Ohio police released the disturbing bodycam footage showing officers shooting and killing Ta’Kiya Young, a pregnant Black woman. The 21-year-old’s family called the video’s release a “gross misuse of power and authority.”
The shooting occurred on Aug. 24 in the Ohio suburb of Blendon Township, where Young had been sitting in her car outside a grocery store. The footage showed an officer—whose face and badge were redacted from the video—standing at the driver’s side window of Young’s care and ordering her to “get out of the car.”
The officer accused Young of shoplifting and repeatedly demanded that the pregnant woman get out of the car, with his gun seemingly drawn. Instead of complying, Young appeared to accelerate her vehicle toward the parking lot exit. A second police officer fired through her front windshield, fatally striking the young Black mother. The video then shows her dark-colored sedan drifting to the side of the grocery store. The police officers on the scene chased the slow-moving car and manually broke her window. No medical assistance was shown to be provided on the bodycam footage from any of the officers.
Young’s unborn baby, who was expected to arrive in November, did not survive the incident.
According to the Associated Press, the Young family was able to view the footage of Ta’Kiya’s last moments before it was released publicly. They released a statement under the supervision of their attorney, Sean Walton, on Friday.
The statement began, “Having viewed the footage in its entirety, it is undeniable that Ta’Kiya’s death was not only avoidable, but also a gross misuse of power and authority.”
Walton affirmed to the public that they would seek criminal indictment of the officers involved in Young’s death, saying the video’s release came on the heels of the family’s growing frustration with Ohio authorities delaying the release of the bodycam footage.
Blendon Township Police Chief John Belford claimed that the delay was procedural, as the staff had to process the video and adequately redact the identifiable information of the officers involved.
The two officers seen in the footage are on paid administrative leave as the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation closely examines the details of the shooting.
Young leaves behind two sons: 6-year-old Ja’Kobie and 3-year-old Ja’Kenlie.