RICHMOND, Va. — A group of musicians, including several violinists, gathered in Richmond, Virginia Tuesday night to play a tribute to Elijah McClain.
At the base of the Lee Monument, the group played "Somewhere Over the Rainbow."
The violin has become a national symbol for the 23-year-old, who used to play the violin for cats at the shelter.
McClain died on Aug. 27, 2019 – three days after he went into cardiac arrest following a confrontation with Aurora officers. He was detained after a report of a “suspicious person” in the area. McClain’s family said he had been walking to the store to get iced tea, and would usually wear a face mask when it got cold outside.
Officers used a carotid hold on McClain and first responders later gave him ketamine, a sedative. He went into cardiac arrest in the ambulance on the way to the hospital. A coroner’s report found his cause of death inconclusive, and the 17th District Attorney’s Office declined to file charges against the officers involved.
Interest in the investigation into McClain's death has garnered national attention following the in-custody death of George Floyd in Minneapolis and ensuing nationwide protests, which brought attention to police brutality and systemic racism.
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