Police officers fired for photos mocking Elijah McClain, a Black man who died after being choked by police
Screengrab: Twitter

During the anti-racist and anti-police brutality protest that have swept across the US in recent weeks, there’s been no shortage of disturbing news stories and images.

But a story involving three police officers from Colorado is truly despicable, even by the dystopian standards of 2020.

Three police officers who took jovial and celebratory photos last year, at a memorial for a Black man who was placed in a chokehold and died, have all been terminated from the Aurora Police Department.

Four officers were involved in the incident but one of them, Jaron Jones, resigned earlier this week. Now Erica Marrero, Kyle Dittrich and Jason Rosenblatt have all been fired.

Police chief Vanessa Wilson said:

We're ashamed, we're sickened and we're angry.

While the allegations of this internal affairs case are not criminal, it is a crime against humanity and decency.

It shows a lack of morals, values and integrity and a judgment that I can no longer trust to allow them to wear this badge.

The photos were taken on 20 October 2019, but have only just surfaced publicly. Not only are the officers smiling at the site of the tragedy, one of them shows them recreating the carotid control hold that other officers put on McClain prior to his death.

McClain was a 23-year-old unarmed Black man who died days after he was put in a chokehold and sedated by police when walking home in Aurora after buying iced tea at a local corner store in August 2019.

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