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AG Nessel agrees to review McKenzie Cochran case

Cochran was killed by mall security in 2014
Posted at 4:41 PM, Jun 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-17 12:06:35-04

(WXYZ) — Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel has agreed to review the 2014 case of a Black man who died at the hands of mall security officers in Southfield. The AG's office made the announcement Tuesday.

RELATED: Oakland County prosecutor to request outside review for 2014 killing of McKenzie Cochran by mall security

This announcement comes after 7 Action News confirmed Sunday that Oakland County Prosecutor Jessica Cooper would submit the case to the attorney general's office for review.

Cooper's office has said that charges were not warranted in the case. And six years later, Cooper still has maintained that facts haven't changed despite strong similarities to the George Floyd case in Minnesota.

“My office will conduct a thorough and comprehensive review of this case to determine whether any additional action should have been taken in response to Mr. Cochran’s death,” Nessel said in a statement. “If the evidence warrants additional action, we will make efforts to ensure justice is served.”

The case was originally investigated by the Southfield Police Department and reviewed by the Oakland County Prosecutor. Both agencies have now requested an outside review of the case.

Cell phone video showed 25-year-old McKenzie Cochran, of Ferndale, being held down after security guards pepper sprayed him at the now closed Northland Mall in January 2014.

Cochran’s family says they’ve been denied justice for years after his death. They now hope years later that charges can be filed.

“I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe,” Cochran yelled.

But a security officer replied, “If you can talk, you can breathe.”

RELATED: Death of George Floyd brings back pain to McKenzie Cochran’s family after no charges filed In death

After security placed a knee on his back and held him down, McKenzie later became unconscious and died. An autopsy later determined his death was a result of positional asphyxia.