DENVER – An investigation is underway after a man died after a confrontation with police in suburban Denver.
Aurora police received a call about a suspicious person wearing a ski mask and waving his arms as he walked down a street Aug. 24, The Denver Post reported. The man, Elijah McClain, 23, refused to stop walking and fought back when officers tried to take him into custody, according to police.
Paramedics gave McClain a medication to calm him down, and he suffered cardiac arrest on the way to the hospital. His family said he suffered a brain injury and was taken off life support Friday.
“This was a case of police brutality of someone so sweet,” said the man’s younger sister, Samara McClain. “He doesn’t deserve this.”
She said her brother was walking to a corner store to get tea for a cousin and often wore masks when he was outside because he had a blood condition that caused him to become cold easily.
Aurora police spokesman Anthony Camacho said he couldn’t confirm the extent of McClain’s injuries, and investigators have declined to say what medication he was given.
Three officers have been placed on paid administrative leave while the confrontation is being investigated, and Aurora Police Chief Nick Metz said the department will release body camera footage of the confrontation after prosecutors complete their review.
Samara McClain said her brother was a massage therapist and was planning to go to college soon and earn a degree.
“He was a really good person,” she said. “He didn’t argue with anybody. If you tried to argue with him, he would just say ‘I love you’ and walk away.”