*The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) has completed its review of the fatal police shooting of 16-year-old Ma’Khia Bryant, but the victim’s family say they’re concerned the probe wasn’t thorough.
The report is now in the hands of the prosecutor’s office and set to go to a grand jury.
Bryant was shot by Columbus police officer Nicholas Reardon, 20 minutes before a guilty verdict was announced against former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, who was convicted in the death of George Floyd last May.
Less than six hours after the Bryant shooting that occurred in April 2021, Columbus police released body camera footage, showing the teen with a knife as she lunged at an adult woman who allegedly bullied the teenager.
Per NBC 4, Jeanene Hammonds, Bryant’s grandmother, said she was not interviewed by police even though she was at the scene of the shooting.
“It was not thorough enough for me because they did not interview me that night,” Hammonds said.
“Ma’Khia’s life as we all know was taken far too soon. And we must do everything we can to make sure it is not swept under the rug,” said family attorney Michelle Martin, who wants the prosecutor’s office to take the investigation further.
“I appreciate the leadership in Ohio for making sure we stay focused and holding those accountable that should be held accountable,” said Martin.
“This investigation cannot be reduced to just a few moments and a few seconds prior to Ma’Khia’s death. But we must consider the entirety of the situation,” Martin added.
Ma’Khia’s grandmother said a thorough investigation “would help me to heal.”
“If I had been given that opportunity that night I would be in a better position today,” said Hammond, who rejects Attorney General Dave Yost’s statement that there was a thorough investigation.
“It was not thorough enough for me because they did not interview me that night. It was nearly a month after the incident that they sent me a letter stating that we want to interview you now.
Why did you detain me that night and say you’d charge me with a felony and not interview me,” asked Hammond.
“I knew what happened on the evening of the incident. And that is what I was going to discuss with them (BCI agents) before a videotape got out making my granddaughter look like she was a monster,” Hammond said.
BCI agents claim they didn’t interview Hammon because they didn’t have her number, despite members of the media being able to contact her.
“I am trying to keep normalcy. I am trying to be a teenager but I am also trying to get justice for my sister,” said Hammond’s other granddaughter, 15-year old Ja’Naiha Bryant.
“It’s kind of hard to take in because I feel like with everybody is coming to us. They all look at us differently, and they have a lot of questions and it’s kind of hard for me to grieve,” she added.
“I want to give thanks to people supporting us. Because this is going to be a journey. And we are definitely going to need the support so I want to say thanks to that,” Bryant said.