Columbus Police Department Interim Chief Michael Woods gave a live update on the Ma’Khia Bryant shooting and took questions.
Woods confirmed that it is not the police department policy for officers to yell their intent before discharging their firearm.
“If there is time and opportunity, we try and include that. But we do not require it if that time and opportunity is not there.”
From the video footage, and reporting from multiple sources, it does not appear this was the case.
Another reporter asked if it was known what the altercation that led up to the shooting was about. Woods confirmed that he did not, and that this was the purview of the Bureau of Criminal Investigation.
“They are getting that first crack, they want to have that information, they want to have that information fresh.”
Woods gave more clarity on the role of BCI in the investigation.
“[To] your question about the timeliness, and how quick we were able to get this information out there. One of the things that has to occur before we get that, is that BCI wants to have that opportunity to look at that body worn camera footage. So we send a homicide detective to that scene, with a computer that allows them to watch that. They want to review all that body worn camera, so that when they’re doing their investigation, the scene, any evidence, they want to make sure they have collected any evidence. So they’re getting that first opportunity.”
The fact that the Columbus Police Department was able to release any body cam footage so quickly is unprecedented. Woods continued,
“So, last night that opportunity to review that happened quickly, then that body worn camera was brought into police headquarters, we uploaded it into the system, and then we got that out as quickly as we could, I believe about 5 and a half hours.”
“That’s extremely fast, and I’m not going to say we’re going to be able to do that every time.”
When asked about his thoughts on the incident, Woods got choked up.
It’s a tragedy. There’s no other way to say it. It’s a 16-year old girl. I’m a father, her family is grieving. Regardless of the circumstances establishing this, a 16-year old girl lost her life, and I really wish this wasn’t happening.”