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Graphic Warning: Pregnant Woman Shot And Killed By Police After Alleged Shoplifting Incident

Blendon Township Police recently released body cam footage to the public from a deadly shooting involving 21-year-old Ta’Kiya Young in a Kroger parking lot. The video revealed an officer shooting Young within 30 seconds of their interaction. Young was trying to steer away from the officers when her car moved forward, nudging one officer before he fired at her.

Previously, Young was allegedly involved in shoplifting from the said Kroger. When officers were informed by a store employee, they approached her car. It’s noteworthy that Young was pregnant and was expected to give birth in November.

Blendon Township’s use-of-force policy advises officers to avoid the path of a moving vehicle rather than discharging their weapon, unless there are no alternatives to counteract the immediate threat. The video showed the officer did not move out of the car’s way and instead chose to shoot Young.

The footage further displayed an earlier scene where officers tried to unlock another car. When Young entered her own vehicle, one officer approached her after being told something by an unidentified individual. This turned out to be information from a Kroger employee alleging Young had stolen alcohol, although the video did not confirm this. Following a brief exchange, the officer began knocking on Young’s window, and shortly after, the shooting occurred.

While the video did not show officers providing immediate aid to Young, Blendon Township Police Chief John Belford clarified that they did offer assistance. Young was rushed to St. Ann’s Hospital but did not survive.

Officer identities were concealed due to Marsy’s Law, which shields crime victims’ identities. Belford revealed that the officers are being regarded as crime victims in this scenario and expressed sympathy for Young’s family. He also anticipates legal consequences.

The family of Young, now represented by civil rights attorney Sean Walton, has called for more transparency. They were allowed to see the footage before its public release. The officer who did not shoot Young has resumed his duties, while the other remains on administrative leave.

The Ohio Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation is examining the incident. Meanwhile, the NAACP Columbus President, Nana Watson, expressed her sorrow over the event and demanded accountability, including resignations from the involved officer and police chief. Both Watson and representatives from the police union hope for the release of additional footage from Kroger’s surveillance cameras.

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