COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – Supporters of a Columbus family whose 13-year-old was shot and killed are calling on the city to make changes.
Supporters of Reed’s family attended Monday’s Columbus City Council meeting, saying the family did not get some of the help they should have after the shooting.
“We can’t bring Sin’zae back,” said Dejuan Sharp, a supporter of the Reed family. “We can’t bring anybody back. We’re not really here to talk about Sin’zae, but we will talk about a part of Sin’zae’s story that we find that the city can get ahead of.”
They also said there have been lapses in communication.
“Megan (Reed, Sin’zae’s mother) was not given the help she should have received after the death of Sin’zae,” said Ramon Obey.
Obey was speaking on behalf of Megan Reed, bringing ideas for change to city hall. Reed was shot and killed on Wedgewood Drive on Oct. 12, 2022.
“She was left to mourn alone without a trauma team showing up to walk her through the process or even be in there to help her,” Obey said.
Supporters of Reed’s family ended up being helped by other community members, not specialists from the city. Columbus Public Health has its care coalition, which usually reaches out to families and neighborhoods after homicides.
“I don’t know the process as far as what happened, why you didn’t get notified, but I certainly will be doing some research into that,” said Columbus Public Health Assistant Health Commissioner Anita Clark.
Obey said he would like to see a community trauma care unit led by community organizations.
“A community response team by actual community members who understand the day-to-day lives of these people are going to make a huge difference,” he said.
Krieg Butler, 36, was arrested and charged with murder in the shooting of Sin’zae Reed. The charge was dismissed, with the prosecutor’s office saying the case might be presented to the grand jury and the police saying the investigation is far from over.
Obey and others said the family was not told when Butler was released and wants better communication in the future.
“As the director of public safety, as the son of a murdered father, it is now my responsibility to go back and figure out why we did not communicate effectively,” said Robert Clark, the Columbus Department of Public Safety director.
Council President Shannon Hardin said the group’s advocacy has brought attention and focus to Sin’zae Reed’s death. Obey said he believes councilmembers hearts are in it to help and he wants to see action past what was said at Monday’s meeting.