Family of man killed during Akron police shooting demand accountability from involved officers

Published: Jun. 30, 2022 at 11:48 AM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - The family of Jayland Walker and their attorneys held a news conference on Thursday afternoon to ask residents in the city to remain peaceful, as they push for transparency after the recent Akron police-involved shooting that resulted in the death of the 25-year-old.

The attorneys, on behalf of Walker’s family, said they are demanding justice and accountability from the officers who were involved in the shooting.

The family is devastated by his death.

“Jayland was a sweet young man, he never caused any trouble,” said his aunt, Lajuana Walker-Dawkins, “We love Jayland, he was my sweet little nephew and we miss him.”

According to Akron police, officers initially tried to pull over a driver for a traffic violation at approximately 12:30 a.m. on Monday near Thayer Street and East Tallmadge Avenue.

The driver, later identified as Walker, refused to stop, prompting police to pursue him onto State Route 8.

During the minutes-long chase, Akron police said a gun was discharged from Walker’s vehicle.

Walker, who most recently worked as a DoorDash delivery driver, eventually slowed down near the intersection of East Wilbeth Road near Clairmont Street and fled on foot.

Akron police said “actions by the suspect” during the foot pursuit caused officers to shoot at Walker.

Sources tell 19 News that at least 8 officers fired their weapons and that, “dozens and dozens,” of shots were fired.

Officials with the Akron Police Department have not remarked on those allegations.

The Summit County Medical Examiner’s Office said Walker was pronounced dead at the scene.

Attorney Bobby DiCello is among the lawyers handling the case for the family.

“This is not a monster, this is not a man who ever caught a crime in his life,” he said.

Hours before Thursday’s press conference, protesters gathered in front of the Akron Police Department over the recent officer-involved shooting death of Walker.

The group of protesters demonstrating this week’s police shooting briefly blocked traffic before officers came out of the building and cleared the roadway.

“Simply, we recognize their right to peacefully demonstrate, we constitutionally respect that,” said Akron police Lt. Michael Miller, “We just don’t want it to spill over to roadway where traffic and other people commuting in and through Akron is impacted.”

The eight officers involved in the fatal shooting were placed on paid administrative leave, per departmental procedure.

The attorney said during Thursday’s remarks that Akron police could release body camera video from the deadly incident within the next 24 hours.

Akron police and the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation are continuing to investigate the incident.

This is a developing story.

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