Sherri Shepherd is hurting after hearing about Elijah McClain's tragic death. The View co-host posted an emotional video on her Instagram on Thursday in which she shares the story of the 23-year-old Black man who was killed by police officers in Aurora, Colorado, last August. McClain's story began to resurface this week, amid the ongoing protests against police brutality and calls for justice for the deaths of many Black people in recent months.
Shepherd begins her video by sharing McClain's tragic story and explaining how she has a son who reminds her of the slain boy.
"My son is like Elijah. I'm a Black mother and I have a child," Shepherd says as she begins to cry. "Elijah died because nobody got to know the beauty… These cops, you didn't take the time to see what Elijah just said. That he was different, and he was murdered. Why? All we want is to know that our child will be able to go to the store and get some ice tea and come back home."
Shepherd, visibly shaken, continues by saying that Elijah said he was trying to be better, "and he was murdered. Why do you kill our children?!"
"The cops were called bc he looked suspicious (Elijah was wearing a ski mask to help w his anemia and also it helped him w his social anxiety)," Shepherd captioned her post, in part. "Elijah was just a beautifully, sweet young man who loved playing the violin for kittens at the animal shelter to make them feel better. Elijah tried to tell the police he was an introvert and was different but they didn’t care."
"As I kiss my son goodnight, I cry with anguish in my soul. Because soon Jeffrey, who loves the WWE and making people laugh will be out walking wearing his hoodie, (bc it calms his nervous system). What will people think or do to my Baby just bc his skin is brown?" she asked. "We must get justice for Elijah McClain - please send me the link and I will post."
According to CBS News, McClain was walking in Aurora on the night of Aug. 24, 2019, when a 911 caller reported a "suspicious" person in a ski mask who was "acting weird." When approached by officers, he "appeared to ignore" commands, per District Attorney Dave Young. When they approached him, he was unarmed and they tackled him to the ground. They put him in a carotid hold and he lost consciousness. The officers called first responders who injected him with ketamine. He was taken to the hospital and declared brain dead three days later.
As of Thursday, over 3 million people have signed a Change.org petition to bring justice to McClain. McClain's mother, Sheneen McClain, told CBSN Denver, "I thank God that he was my son because just him being born brought life into my world, you know what I mean? I know he was giving life to other people too."
On Thursday, Colorado Gov. Jared Polis also told the state’s top prosecutor to reopen McClain's investigation, per the Associated Press. The governor signed an executive order directing state Attorney General Phil Weiser to investigate his death and possibly prosecute the three white officers involved.