Coroner rules shooting death of Ma’Khia Bryant by Columbus Police officer a homicide


COLUMBUS (WCMH) — The Franklin County Coroner has ruled the death of a 16-year-old girl shot by a Columbus police officer a homicide.

Franklin County Coroner Dr. Anahi M. Ortiz ruled that Ma’Khia Bryant died after being shot four times by Columbus Police Officer Nicholas Reardon on April 20.

The determination of a homicide means that Bryant’s death was caused by another person, but it is not a criminal ruling.

Body camera footage released by Columbus Police appears to show Bryant wielding a knife while going after another person at the scene. Footage from Reardon’s camera shows the officer fire his gun four times before Bryant falls to the ground. Officers at the scene, including Reardon, can be seen administering first aid and CPR to Bryant.

In early July, Ohio Attorney General David Yost said the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) has passed the case on to the Franklin County Prosecutor’s Office and a grand jury will decide on whether to charge Reardon.

The Franklin County Prosecutor’s Office released the following statement Monday afternoon:

The autopsy report of Ma’Khia Bryant was released today by the office of Franklin County Coroner Dr. Anahi Ortiz. Earlier this summer, this matter was assigned to Special Prosecutors H. Tim Merkle and Gary Shroyer as the Franklin County Prosecuting Attorney serves as legal counsel for Franklin County Children Services. Prosecutor Tyack continues his commitment to the community to ensure transparency and justice in each case that comes to the Franklin County Prosecutor’s Office. Prosecutor Tyack has complete confidence in Mr. Merkle and Mr. Shroyer and their talent, experience, and professional ethics. We will continue to keep the community apprised of the status of this matter as events warrant.

Franklin County Prosecutor’s Office

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