A map of the route taken shows that the pilot spelt out “CDP” over a majority Black area, according to the Columbus Dispatch. The journey took place on 17 April, days before Columbus police killed a 16-year-old girl.
The TikTok, created by and featuring Mik Zazon, critiques the police department for what she believes is a waste of tax payer’s money.
“Now instead of reallocating those funds towards, I don’t know, de-escalation or community safety. they decided to disrupt Black neighbourhoods.”
She said this to her 1.1 million followers, and gathered over 287,000 views since it was posted on Wednesday.
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Elizabeth Brown, City Council President voiced her opposition to the helicopter patrol.
“I’m beyond frustrated. Last summer I proposed decreasing our helicopter by one - to save dollars and reinvest in community-based safety strategies. But I was told how essential our current size is, and my measure failed. Let’s be clear: a joyride is NOT essential work.” she tweeted
People are now protesting over the death of Ma’Khia Bryant who was killed days after the helicopter event, the same day that ex cop Derek Chauvin was found guilty on all three counts for the death of George Floyd.
Ohio State University students occupied their union with journalists tweeting the students’ demands.
“Ohio State students take over student union to demand OSU cut ties with Columbus Police after the killing of Ma’Khia Bryant, then march to the statehouse.”
Reacting to the helicopter ride criticism, Columbus Police said, “no calls for service were missed during this time and no additional fuel was utilised, but even the appearance that officers were not operating within the mission of the aviation section is not acceptable.” in a statement posted on Twitter.