AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) – Police in Aurora spoke on Friday about the Aug. 24 death of Elijah McClain in a news conference. The 23-year-old man was confronted by police, then got into what appeared to be a struggle. He apparently suffered a heart attack on the way to the hospital and later died.

Elijah McClain

Elijah McClain (credit: Mari Newman)

There is body cam video of the struggle but officers say it’s not very clear what is happening in it because three of the officers’ body cameras came off during the struggle. Police said they aren’t releasing that video to the public until the investigation moves further along and they get the okay from the district attorney’s office.

Family and friends of McClain say they want the police officers involved in his death to be fired and investigated for murder. An attorney who represents the family and who viewed the body cam video called the actions by police torture.

Aurora Deputy Chief Paul O’Keefe was asked about that lawyer’s comments in the news conference.

“I am not going to get into details of that case,” he said “For that you will have to go to the district attorney. But I think the term torture is a mischaracterization.”


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