Tyre King protesters take their case from city hall to the prosecutor's office
For the second week in a row, members of the People's Justice Project met in front of Columbus City Hall. They want change over how police-involved shootings are handled, especially after the cases involving 13-year old Tyre King, and earlier this summer, Henry Green.
Monday, Columbus City Council President Zach Klein met the group outside before the regular council meeting started and said he plans to work with them to take a better look at how those cases are handled.
Last week, the group's protests led to shutting down the Columbus City Council meeting. The groups says, among other items, they want an independent counsel to handle police-involved shootings. They also want the city to allocate half of the yearly police budget to prevention, intervention, and community policing. And they are demanding the summer safety initiative be turned over to the community.
"I'm committed to working with all my council colleagues, Mayor Ginther, the department of public safety to make the necessary changes to the community summer safety initiative to that it is truly a program that makes us safer" said Council president Zach Klein.
While the group was pleased with efforts at city hall, their march down North High Street to Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O'Brien's office wasn't so successful. The group had wanted to meet with the prosecutor and to drop off a letter demanding O'Brien get tougher when it comes to handling and prosecuting police-involved shootings.
When the group arrived, they were told to leave their letter with security for Mr. O'Brien to review.
"I can't control what Ron O'Brien does, but he knows about use and he knows what we want and what we need" said Stacey Little of the People's Justice Project.
The group has given the Prosecutor's office until Friday to respond to a demand to schedule a public meeting about how police-involved shootings are handled in Columbus. The group also says they'll continue to work closely with Columbus City Council but may return to their next meeting.