Aurora, Colorado officers, police and medics are submitting motions to dismiss the lawsuit in opposition to Elijah McClain
Aurora, Colorado attorneys, police officers and medical professionals involved in Elijah McClain’s death filed multiple petitions in the Colorado District Court last week to dismiss a lawsuit by McClain’s family in August. The lawsuit alleges that discriminatory practices resulted in officials holding a black man in a stranglehold and paramedics “ruthlessly” administering drugs that contributed to the 23-year-old’s death.
Elijah McClain’s family files lawsuit because “Elijah’s killers put out the light of a beautiful young man”
The Associated Press reports that one of the motions filed late Monday by attorneys for the three officers who confronted McClain last year alleged the plaintiffs in the lawsuit failed to prove the officers treated McClain differently than they did would have if he were white.
It often seems like, no matter how many studies show, officers are far more likely to use violence against black suspects – and in this case, a black man supposedly walking home from the store – than our white counterparts. The authorities will still say, “Race had nothing to do with it.”
“Elijah McClain’s death is a tragedy,” the motion reads, Channel 9 News reports. “However, this tragedy was not caused by the willful, discriminatory acts or omissions of the APD (Aurora Police Department) defendants.”
The department said the same thing in a statement last month, adding, “The APD defendants deny that they used excessive force against Mr McClain in violation of the Fourth Amendment, that they denied him the same protection under the Fourteenth Amendment and that they caused his death from battery or neglect. “
The story goes on
According to the Denver Post, the City of Aurora also filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit. In that motion, attorneys opposed the lawsuit’s allegation that the city’s policies resulted in police officers and Aurora Fire Rescue paramedics violating McClain’s constitutional rights and causing his death. The city’s motion argues that the lawsuit makes “only conclusive allegations regarding alleged failure to attend training” but does not specify problems with the “overall training”. Instead, the defendants claim that the lawsuit asserts facts that merely indicate “deficiencies in the training and supervision of individual officials.”
According to the AP, Mari Newman, an attorney for the McClain family, released a statement calling the claims “desperate” and saying she expected the court to side with her clients.
“We expect the court will see these motions for what they are: a desperate attempt to avoid responsibility for the murder of an innocent young black man and to prevent Elijah’s family and community from obtaining justice,” said they.