The police in Blendon Township, Ohio, are already hard at work building a case for victim-blaming and making Ta’Kiya Young responsible for her own death while simultaneously framing the cop who killed her and her unborn daughter as the victim.
Before we even knew the details of what happened during that Aug. 24 shooting and well before the release of police bodycam footage on Friday, the Columbus Dispatch had already given us a synopsis of Ta’Kiya’s life story, including the fact that she was a teenage mother to two sons, 6-year-old Ja’Kobie and 3-year-old Ja’Kenli. At the time she was killed, Ta’Kiya was seven months pregnant with her third child, a girl who was due to be born in November.
The Dispatch made sure to mention Ta’Kiya Young had some minor criminal infractions in her past and that on the day she died, the grandmother who raised her had called the police on her to report her for violating a protection order, and a misdemeanor charge was filed against Ta’Kiya.
None of that matters in the context of the police officer shooting and killing her, but we are being fed this information anyway because whenever a Black person is the victim of an extrajudicial killing by a police officer, there is an immediate rush to dehumanize them and make them less sympathetic in the eyes of the public.
The fact is, the police didn’t know anything about Ta’Kiya Young when they approached her to follow up on an accusation made by a Kroger employee that Young had shoplifted alcohol from the store.Police shot and killed Ta’Kiya Young and her unborn daughter. Now they’re playing the ‘victim.’