A funeral has been set for 16-year-old Ma’Khia Bryant who was shot dead by Columbus Police last week. According to The Columbus Dispatch, the service will take place on Friday (April 30) at the First Church of God “The City,” 3480 Refugee Road on the city’s Southeast Side.
The church also hosted the funerals of Casey Goodwin Jr. and Andre Hill, two Black men shot and killed by law enforcement in December 2020. Jerry Ross, a spokesman for Paula Bryant, Ma’Khia’s birth mother, confirmed to the newspaper the viewing will take place at noon followed by the funeral at 1 p.m. ET.
Bishop Timothy Clarke, the pastor of First Church, spoke to 10TV about having to hold heartbreaking services at his house of worship, back-to-back.
“Grief is like wet sand. When you add to that tragedy, that weight only becomes greater,” said Bishop Clarke. “That’s been my heart now. What can we as the city do, to bury this baby with the dignity she deserves?
He added: “Ma’Khia is worth grieving. We should give ourselves and others the gift of grace, gather around this family, and guard and sustain them.”
Bryant was fatally shot on Wednesday (April 20) by the now off-duty officer Nicholas Reardon. According to her foster mother, Angela Moore, the teen had been in an argument over house chores in the late afternoon.
Body camera footage shows Bryant was armed with a knife and engaged in a physical altercation with two, unidentified young girls. As Bryant appeared to charge toward one of the girls, Reardon fired 4 fatal gunshots shortly after his arrival at the scene. The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation is still investigating the shooting death of Bryant.
Celebrities like R&B singer Kehlani have asked to “abolish the police” and spoken out against the shooting, which happened on the same day former cop Derek Chauvin was found guilty of the murder of George Floyd. advocating
“While it’s being projected at the masses that today is supposed to be ‘celebratory’ because of today’s ‘justice,'” she wrote. “… a few hours ago 16 year old Ma’Khia Bryant was shot and killed by the police when SHE called for help. i’m not here to police anyone celebration, police anyone’s optimism for the future but i ask… what the f**k IS justice? what is justice when the police still exist in our communities with the power & free range to take Black lives like they are nothing.”