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Mall Security Guards Kill Unarmed Black Man in Detroit Suburb and Get Away With It

McKenzie Cochran

McKenzie Cochran

Apparently even mall security guards can kill an unarmed Black man and get away with it.

Oakland County Prosecutor Jessica Cooper announced this week that there was no proof of criminal intent in the death of McKenzie Cochran, 25, who died at the Northland Mall in the Detroit suburb of Southfield last January. So there will be no criminal charges brought against the mall security guards who caused his death.

The circumstances of the case were eerily reminiscent of the killing of Eric Garner in Staten Island. A day after Cochran had been asked to leave the mall by security guards because of his suspicious behavior, Cochran returned and reportedly told a worker at a jewelry store that he wanted to kill someone. When the worker called security, guards showed up and, when Cochran refused to leave, they pepper-sprayed and restrained him.

Three officers held him for several minutes on the ground, one with a knee in his back.

Witnesses caught the incident on their cell phone videos, which show Cochran crying out and saying, “I can’t breathe.”

He said he was dying and asked bystanders to call 911, but a guard kept repeating, “Stop resisting.”

Cochran died, and in March the Oakland County Medical Examiner’s Office ruled that the cause of death was position compression asphyxia.

This is not an issue of whether these security guards were negligent,” the prosecutor said, according to the Detroit News. “It’s whether they were criminally negligent.”

She said the guards weren’t trained to restrain Cochran properly. Local police had been called by the security guards, but it took 10 minutes for them to arrive because they had the wrong location in the mall.

“I don’t know what an accident is, when you’ve got the knee in the back, compresses the chest cavity, which most police departments do not do, and security do not do, and then you say, ‘He caused his own death by resisting,'” Ron Scott, spokesman for the Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality, told local media.

Cochran’s family’s attorney Gerald Thurswell has filed a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of Cochran’s family against the mall, the individual guards and the security company, IPC International. But he said it wasn’t a substitute for murder charges in the eyes of Cochran’s mother, according to the Huffington Post.

“The family was devastated,” Thurswell said. “Her son’s life was taken, a 25-year-old who didn’t do anything wrong at all, and the people who killed him are not being held accountable through the criminal justice system.”


What people are saying

19 thoughts on “Mall Security Guards Kill Unarmed Black Man in Detroit Suburb and Get Away With It

  1. Jazz Rukiya says:

    Whether they were trained or not, they should be held accountable

  2. They're going to niggarize this guy in the lamestream media. They're going to dig deep, they'll find his pre-school suspension, and post unflattering photos of him.

  3. Theodora Anagor says:

    His family can sue the shopping mall. They are liable for his death,

  4. Anthony Batiste says:

    Hopefully the cops in question are decapitated.

  5. Donna Douglas says:

    Police and Mall cops have gone to far.What part of I cant breathe don't they understand.Charge their ass with Homicide!

  6. William Frederick Ter Burgh says:

    Some people shouldn't be given the authority to "restrain" anyone if they don't know how to. No matter what this man supposedly did according to the guards doesn't warrant a restraint much less his death. I hope his family is able to sue that security company, mall and the idiot guards that killed him, intentionally or not. Wrongful death in civil court is the least they should get for doing this.

  7. Ok Detroit, what's up, what are you'll finna do. You'll gonna let that slide, get out and fight.

  8. I've been a licensed security officer for the past 12 years and this is total crap! Since they weren't trained in how to restrain, they shouldn't have been do it. That mall should be sued for not properly training their officers. Anyone who is going into the security field should learn self-defense even at their own expense. Be professional and save lives.

  9. How people continue to pursue their family's death over lawsuits and court rooms while the family member is in the grave is beyond me. How do we pay back the murder of your loved one with cash? No they all should be strangled in the same fashion. In these cases – fire with fire is the only equality.

  10. This a legal matters Hire so private investigators, experts doctors,and build a case for murder prove your theory of murder then present your evidence to the prosecutor and the world.

    Remember Travon Martin you cannot win a conviction in the streets. Yes they charged the dude but the prosecutor botched the trial. You need compelling evidence presented to a non bias jury by a prosecutor willing to fight for the rights of a dead 25 year old Black man in the Suburbs of Detroit .

  11. "We are here because there is no refuge finally from ourselves. Until we confront ourselves through the eyes and hearts of others, we are running. Until we suffer them to share our secrets, we have no safety from them. Afraid to be known, we cannot know ourselves nor any other, we will be alone. Where else but on our common ground can we find such a mirror. Here together we can at last appear clearly to ourselves. Not as the giant of our dreams. Nor the dwarf of our fears. But as a person, part of a whole sharing in it's purpose. On this ground we can each take root and grow. Not alone any more as in death, but alive to ourselves and to others." by Kotiro Rua

    This is a criminal matter for the courts: Mr Martin "Think outside your box". You cannot win a legal battle in the street it must won in the court. Setup a website and Prosecution Fund: Use Crowd Funding to raise money, hire professional investigators, retired Michigan Prosecutor, hire expert doctors, find evidence to prove your theory of murder. Then present your findings to the prosecutor and the world.

    Remember Florida and Travon Martin the prosecutor charged the dude(Zman) then botch the trial. You need a mountain of evidence proving criminal negligence, a non-biased jury and prosecutor willing to fight for the rights of a dead 25 year old black male in Oakland County Michigan.

    If a professional driver who is driving recklessly kills someone in an accident and is charged with murder then a reckless security guard should be held to a similar Michigan standard.

  12. Keone Rivers says:

    america…. nothing new.

  13. David P Christian says:

    Heck they saw that the other police officers got away with it, why shouldn't they…? Its in the book … Just like Dear Richard Pryor said

  14. If you flip the script with all these murders, and white men were being killed by Black cops, I think you'd get a different result, every time.

    Black Unity is the solution, is the plan.

  15. Roger Lattimore says:

    At what point do you take responsibility for your actions. It's sad this young man died. However, as a person you can't go around telling people you want to kill someone with the problems we are facing in America with random killings…

  16. I am so infuriated by the actions and inactions of law enforcement, this is such bull shit ,they all need to pay every single officer who can't control the urge to murder, an unarmed human being, for no damn reason. Prison time is the only answer for these KILLER COPS!!! They don't even deserve to be among the citizens of this country. SHAME ON THEM ALL!!!!

  17. Curtis Davis says:

    the shame is that we stand by and watch if it had been my brother it would have been two dead or none at all and beat the hell up mall cops

  18. Gayle Davis says:

    It sounds like you're unaware of the plethora of excuses used to justify excessive force. I do not believe for one minute this young man threatened anyone's life the day before.

  19. Angie Lawson says:

    Learn how to talk first before making suggestions ignorant ass…..What the fuck is "Finna"?

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