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LaWayne Mosley, father of Elijah McClain, wears a T-shirt with is son's picture on it during a press conference in Oct. 2019. Photo: Andy Cross/MediaNewsGroup/The Denver Post via Getty Images

Interim Aurora, Colorado, police chief Vanessa Wilson fired two officers for reenacting the death of 23-year-old Elijah McClain and a third officer for commenting on the photo that captured the "despicable act," the Washington Post reports.

Why it matters: McClain died in the summer of 2019 after police officers held him in a chokehold and paramedics used a sedative, ketamine. People have been protesting McClain's death recently after the police killing of George Floyd revitalized the movement against police brutality.

What they're saying: Wilson said she fired Officers Erica Marrero and Kyle Dittrich for posing with Jaron Jones, who resigned earlier this week. Wilson called the photo a "despicable act," per the Post.

  • "And if any officer in this police department disagrees and thinks this was acceptable, I will gladly accept your resignation today."
  • Jason Rosenblatt replied "ha ha" to the image when he received it, the Post notes.

The state of play: The renewed focus on McClain's death prompted Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) to reopen an inquiry and appoint a special prosecutor to the case.

  • No police officer has been charged with McClain's death.

Context: A coroner's report concluded McClain died because of "undetermined causes" and the "evidence does not support the prosecution of a homicide," NBC reports.

  • However, the coroner did not rule out that the chokehold and ketamine might have contributed to his death.
  • The coroner "could not exclude the possibility that Mr. McClain suffered from an unexpected reaction to the drug."

Editor's note: Updates with additional details.

Go deeper

Oct 14, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Chicago police union urges officers to defy vaccine mandate

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Chicago's police union is threatening to "file a temporary restraining order" in an attempt to stop the city's COVID-19 vaccination mandate from taking effect, per Fox 32.

The big picture: Under the requirement that's due to take effect on Friday, city of Chicago staff who aren't vaccinated against the coronavirus must be tested semiweekly. They will be placed on unpaid leave if they refuse. Fraternal Order of Police president John Catanzara is urging union members to defy the mandate.

2 hours ago - Technology

TikTok drives new nostalgia economy

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

Older brands, trends and technologies are making a comeback as younger consumers desperately chase slower, less chaotic times.

The big picture: TikTok's algorithm makes it easy for flashback items to resurface and quickly go viral both on its platform and eventually on other social networks.

Updated 5 hours ago - World

Reports: Up to 17 U.S. missionaries kidnapped in Haiti

Haitian soldiers guard the public prosecutor's office in Port-au-Prince earlier this month. Photo: Richard Pierrin/AFP via Getty Images

Children were among up to 17 American Christian missionaries and their relatives kidnapped by a gang in Haiti on Saturday, the New York Times first reported.

Details: The missionaries had just left an orphanage and were traveling by bus to the airport to "drop off some members" and were due to travel to another destination when the gang struck in Port-au-Prince, Haitian security officials said, per the NYT.