Ex-cop gets 14 months in jail in death of Elijah McClain

“I want the McClain family to know the sadness I feel about Elijah being gone. He was young,” Roedema said but stopped short of expressing remorse.”

NBC reports a judge sentenced a former Colorado police officer convicted of killing Elijah McClain to 14 months of jail with work release and four years of probation. Former Aurora Police Officer Randy Roedema will be able to serve his sentence with work release as a consequence for his role in McClain’s death in August of 2019. Roedema was found guilty of two charges, criminally negligent homicide, 4 years, and 3rd Degree Assault, 14 months with release to go to work. He was also sentenced to 200 hours of community service.

Roedema said he wished the initial 911 call that reported McClain looking suspicious that night had never been made. But he didn’t comment about anything he could have done differently.

“We all responded to that incident in a way that we were all trained to do. Needless to say, the situation had a horrible outcome that nobody intended or wanted to happen,” Roedema said.

Per AP: “McClain was stopped by police after a 911 caller reported that he looked suspicious. Another officer put his hands on McClain within seconds, beginning a struggle and restraint that lasted about 20 minutes before paramedics injected him with the ketamine. Experts say the sedative ultimately killed McClain, who was already weakened from struggling to breathe while being pinned down after inhaling vomit into his lungs. Roedema helped hold McClain down while paramedics administered the ketamine.

NBC Background: Elijah McClain, 23, was walking home in the Denver suburb of Aurora over four years ago when police stopped him for wearing a ski mask and allegedly looking suspicious according to a 911 all made by someone living in the neighborhood. When police told McClain to stop, he said he was an introvert and asked them to “please respect the boundaries that I am speaking,” bodycam video of the confrontation showed.

McClain was eventually wrestled to the ground, handcuffed and injected with the sedative ketamine by paramedics who responded to the scene. He died at the hospital on Aug. 30 from “ketamine toxicity,” an autopsy found.

McClain’s mother, Sheneen McClain, called the officer “a bully with a badge.”She told the court on Friday: “That night on Aug. 24, 2019, protecting our community was the furthest thing from Randy Roedema’s mind.” . . .“This is not justice,” she said. “This is not accountability. This is just a slap on the wrist. Because what happened to my son is murder.”

AP adds: Officer Nathan Woodyard was acquitted; the same jury that convicted Roedema acquitted former officer Jason Rosenblatt (Rosenblatt was fired after it emerged that he had texted “ha ha” to fellow officers who had texted him a picture of a memorial honoring McClain); a few weeks later Aurora Fire Rescue paramedics Jeremy Cooper and Peter Cichuniec were convicted. Cichuniec, the senior officer, was found guilty of the most serious charge faced by any of the first responders: felony second-degree assault. It carries a prison sentence of between five and 16 years in prison.