COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — A nominee for the city’s Civilian Review Board encountered controversy about a social media post following the death of 16-year-old Ma’Khia Bryant.
Some are questioning whether Kyle Strickland can remain impartial if seated to the position on the Civilian Review Board. But Strickland says he stands by his post, and he hasn’t taken it down.
“I wasn’t commenting on the specifics of the case. But what I am saying is that she should be alive today, and I don’t think that’s a controversial thing to say,” he explained.
Strickland’s comment is being scrutinized following the post in which he talked about the death of Ma’Khia Bryant. The teen was shot by a police officer after she attempted to stab another person.
Stickland wrote, “Do not let anyone tell you to ‘wait for all the facts’ while they simultaneously frame their own narrative of what occurred.”
“What I’m saying is something deeper, which we’ve got to reckon with the humanity that life has been taken. And everyone is going to talk about each individual circumstance and situation, but family isn’t given a moment to grief without also defending their humanity of their loved one,” he said.
Some are criticizing the Civilian Review Board for another reason. Kiara Yakita spoke about it during a demonstration Friday night.
“The activism community, I speak for myself, and I know the members of the board of BLM…you know the members of the board of the civilian review board, we have an ex-cop…just so many people with connections to cops we can trust the type of group that they’ve built to be completely unbiased and really look at the facts.”
Strickland says at this time he hasn’t been seated on the board and a case hasn’t been presented. He says when the time comes, he’ll be guided by evidence.
“That’s why there are 8 other members on the review body — everybody is going to have a diverse perspectives and different experiences but at the end of the day the goal is to find out what the truth says.”
NBC4 reached out to the Mayor’s Office. A spokesperson tells us that “During the interview process all applicants were questioned thoroughly about leaving their personal biases behind. All that were selected for approval by council met that standard.”