Dramatic bodycam footage shows a pregnant black woman being shot dead by police after a confrontation in a suburban parking lot.
Ta’Kiya Young, a mother of two children who was was pregnant with a third, was shot dead in her car in Blendon, Ohio on August 24 when her car appeared to roll into a police officer. The unborn child was also killed.
Police officers approached Ms Young in her car after an employee from a Kroger supermarket accused her of stealing.
Sean Walton, a lawyer for Ms Young’s family, said the video clearly shows that the shooting was unjustified and has called for the officer to be charged.
“The video did nothing but confirm their fears that Ta’Kiya was murdered unjustifiably and it was just heartbreaking for them to see Ta’Kiya having her life taken away under such ridiculous circumstances,” Mr Walton told Associated Press.
“Ta’Kiya’s family is heartbroken.”
The officer who shot Ms Young is on paid administrative leave while the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation examines the shooting.
The bodycam footage which was released on Friday shows one officer talking to Ms Young at her window, while another stands in front of the bonnet of her car.
She is seen rolling down her car window and asking police why she is being stopped before turning the steering wheel and rolling her car forward into the second officer.
Shortly before the shot is fired, Ms Young can be heard asking: “Are you going to shoot me?”
The second officer then fires a single shot through the windscreen, ultimately resulting in her death.
Her vehicle continues to drift forward until it hits the brick wall of the grocery store to the right. The officers run after the moving vehicle and break the driver’s side window.
Blendon Township Chief John Belford said that within 10 seconds of getting Ms Young out of her vehicle, officers called for paramedics and within 90 seconds, an emergency room doctor, who was in the parking lot at the time, began helping police treat her.
A statement released on behalf of her family after viewing the footage called Ms Young’s death “avoidable”, and a “hateful act”.
“Ta’Kiya was a beacon of love, strength and energy to all who knew her,” the statement read. “Her tragic passing has left a void that words can’t describe, especially for her two young sons, who must now grow up without the love and guidance of their mother, and while coming to understand the circumstances that led to her homicide.”
The statement also said her family wants a “swift indictment” of the officer who fired the shot.
Blendon Township has not yet released the identities of either officer, citing Marsy’s Law which aims to protect the victims of crime.
However, the Columbus Dispatch reported that Ms Young’s family have identified the officer as Connor Grubb, who has been with Blendon Township since 2019, according to police records.
The department said the first officer, who did not fire his weapon, had his arm and hand inside the driver’s window when Ms Young accelerated, making him a victim of misdemenor assault.
The second officer, who fired his weapon, was hit by the vehicle and a victim of attempted vehicular assault, the statement said.
The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation is leading the investigation into the incident.