Cop acquitted in 2nd trial of police officers in Elijah McClain’s death

A jury on Monday acquitted Nathan Woodyard on charges of reckless manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide in the second trial concerning the death of 23-year-old Elijah McClain following an altercation with Aurora, Colorado, police.

Woodyard was the first police officer on the scene in August 2019 and put McClain in a carotid hold. He pleaded not guilty.

“We are respectful of the process in what is a very difficult case,” Woodyard’s lawyers, Megan Downing and Andrew Ho, said in a statement following the verdict. “We have never disregarded the tragic circumstances, but are relieved for what we believe is the just outcome for our client.”

“Today’s verdict is not the one we hoped for, but we respect the jury system and accept this outcome,” Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser said, in part, in a statement. “I thank the jurors for serving and performing their civic duty.”

“We remain undeterred in our pursuit of accountability and justice for Elijah McClain and his family and friends,” Weiser added.