Aurora cops put on leave pending investigation of inappropriate photos focusing on Elijah McClain death

8776

AURORA | Aurora Interim Police Chief Vanessa Wilson has placed unnamed officers on paid administrative leave after reports the cops “were depicted in photographs near the site where Elijah McClain died,” according to a statement made to a police blog.

Channel 4 news reporter Brian Maass is reporting that the officers are accused of making inappropriate photos depicting the choke holds and maneuvers used to subdue Elijah McClain last August.

McClain, 23, unarmed, died after being approached and then arrested by Aurora Police last year. Police forcibly subdued McClain, wrestling him to the ground and performed a carotid hold on him, causing him to faint.

Medics then injected him with ketamine. He suffered two heart attacks and never recovered.

The incident erupted into an international affair last week, culminating in a marathon protest Saturday. After hours of protesting, police said some demonstrators were throwing bottles and rocks and they used pepper spray, rubber pellets and riot techniques to break up the crowd.

Mayor Mike Coffman has called for an emergency meeting of the city council tomorrow to review the police response and ask questions directly of police officials.

All of the officers involved in the alleged photos from last week “were immediately placed on administrative leave with pay in non-enforcement capacities,” police said.

“I immediately ordered Internal Affairs to make this investigation their top priority,” Wilson said in a statement.  “This accelerated investigation was completed this evening. This investigation will be publicly released in its entirety promptly upon its conclusion.”

Wilson did not say how long a report will be in the making.

“This will include reports, photographic evidence obtained, officer’s names, and my final determination which can rise to the level of termination,” Wilson said.