AKRON, Ohio — Akron Police Chief Steve Mylett said in the weeks since the death of Jayland Walker, the pain hasn’t subsided for anyone.
“Everybody is hurting from this. The community is hurting, the Walker family is hurting, the officers are hurting as a result of this. Nobody won as a result of this,” he said.
He said, moving forward, what needs to happen is the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation’s independent investigation to carry on, free of outside speculation and comment.
“I know many people want answers to their questions and they want updated information, including me, but we need to let BCI do their job,” he said. “Everyone connected to this case is relying on BCI to do a complete and thorough investigation and present its finding to the Attorney General’s Office and then to the grand jury.”
Monday, Akron FOP President Clay Cozart released information saying before officers attempted to stop and then chase Jayland Walker’s car on June 27, the night of the shooting, they were aware that the same car was involved in a chase the day prior with New Franklin Police and spotted it just moments earlier.
“They weren’t chasing him just because of an equipment violation,” said Cozart, on Monday.
You can watch more about about the FOP's statements regarding the case in the player below:
But Mylett said he didn’t release any information regarding what officers may have known before the attempted stop because he can’t substantiate it.
“Details I have not been able to corroborate because we are not privy to the involved officers’ statements or any other evidence,” he said. “When I make a public statement, I have to make sure the information is accurate and I can stand by it.”
He noted he is not, in any way, involved in BCI’s investigation and has not spoken to the officers about the events of that night.
“And for me, that’s where the most accurate information is going to be derived from, in terms of what the officers saw and what the officers perceived and what happened before the shooting and what happened after the shooting will come from the officers,” said Mylett. “As I sit here today, I have not had any access to those statements.”
He is asking for patience from the community, so in the end the facts can come out and be presented to the grand jury.
“BCI has got to be given the opportunity and the time to do a thorough investigation, not a fast investigation, not a reckless investigation, but a thorough investigation. I have all the confidence in the world that’s exactly what they’re going to do,” said Mylett.
He added that an independent investigation revealing all of the facts is what the community deserves.
“The grand jury must have as much factual information as possible so they can render a fair decision. We all want that; the Akron community, the Walker family, the involved officers, all of us,” he said.
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