Body camera footage showing the moments leading to the fatal shooting of a pregnant woman by an Ohio police officer was released on Friday.
Ta’Kiya Young, 21, was suspected of shoplifting and confronted by two police officers in an Ohio grocery store parking lot on Aug. 24. After being repeatedly asked to get out of her vehicle by two officers, one of whom pointed a gun at her, Young accelerated her car toward one of the officers, who police said was struck.
After one of the officers fired a shot through her windshield, Young was pronounced dead shortly before 7:45 p.m., according to the Franklin County Coroner’s Office.
The body camera footage, which Young’s family viewed before its release Friday morning, shows an officer approach a car with Young in the driver’s seat.
“Out of the car,” the officer can be heard saying multiple times on the footage.
“For what?” Young asks.
“They said you stole stuff. Do not leave,” he responds.
A second officer then stands in front of Young’s car, puts his hand on the hood, and eventually points his gun at her through the front windshield.
“I didn’t steal s–t,” Young says.
“Then get out,” the first officer says.
The second officer, standing in front of Young’s car, is then seen pointing his gun toward her.
“Get out of the f—ing car,” the second officer says.
“No,” Young is heard saying, followed by, “You gonna shoot me?”
“Get out of the car,” the first officer responds while banging on Young’s window with one hand while grabbing the slightly-opened window with the other.
Seconds later, Young is seen turning her steering wheel and driving off. A sound is heard, as the officer in front of the car fires his gun directly into the windshield of the car at close range and moves to the driver’s side of the car.
It’s not clear where Young was shot, but a scream is heard as the car continues to drive away at a slow speed.
“Shots fired!” the first officer is heard saying. “Stop the God d–m car!”
The second officer pushes the car until it hits the facade of the grocery store.
The officers then break the driver’s window, and the video comes to an end.
The officers attempted to help Young by applying a seal to her wound to stop the bleeding and called emergency services just seconds after getting her out of the car following the shooting, Blendon Township Police Chief John Belford said in a statement.
In a statement, Young’s family and their lawyer said the shooting “is clearly a criminal act” and demanded “a swift indictment” of the officer who shot her.
“Having viewed the footage in its entirety, it is undeniable that Ta’Kiya’s death was not only avoidable, but also a gross misuse of power and authority,” the statement read. “As if the pain of losing Ta’Kiya isn’t enough, we must grapple with the knowledge that her unborn daughter was also robbed of her life in this hateful act.”
Young “was a beacon of love, strength, and energy to all who knew her,” her family said.
“Her tragic passing has left a void that words can’t describe, especially for her two young sons, who must now grow up without the love and guidance of their mother, and while coming to understand the circumstances that led to her homicide,” the statement read.
The officer who fired the shot has been placed on administrative leave. The other officer was initially also placed on administrative leave but returned to duty after Belford viewed body camera footage and saw no reason to keep him on leave, he said.
Both officers involved in the incident have not been identified.
In a statement, Belford said Young drove her car directly into one of the officers and he “fired a single shot through the windshield,” which led to her death. According to Belford, the officer is a victim of attempted vehicular assault.
Young also drove away while part of the other officer’s arm was in the driver’s side window, making him a victim of misdemeanor assault, Belford said.
Because Young is dead, charges can’t be filed, but the crime victim status of both officers remain, Belford said.
“This was a tragedy,” Belford said. “Ms. Young’s family is understandably very upset and grieving. While none of us can fully understand the depths of their pain, all of us can remember them in our prayers and give them the time and space to deal with this heartbreaking turn of events.”
The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation is investigating the shooting. They did not immediately respond to requests for comment.