Gulfport Police Kill 15-Year-Old Jaheim McMillan, Prompting Search For Answers

Jaheim McMillan, a Black 15-year-old, died after a police officer shot him in the head outside a Family Dollar in Gulfport, Miss., on Oct. 6. His family and other residents of the Gulf Coast city are demanding answers from the Gulfport Police Department, including the release of body-camera footage.

At a press conference on Oct. 11, Gulfport Police Chief Adam Cooper said that he had handed over information concerning McMillan’s death to the Mississippi Bureau of Information, which due to a 2021 change to Mississippi law must take over the investigation of all officer-involved shootings.

MBI does not rapidly release information on police shootings, if ever. After the Mississippi Free Press requested an incident report on Wednesday, MBI would confirm only that the incident involved a juvenile, occurred at about 3 p.m., and identified the location as 1016 Pass Road, Gulfport, Mississippi, the location of the Family Dollar. The report provided no information about the circumstances or reason for the shooting.

A Mississippi Department of Public Safety official wrote in response to the Mississippi Free Press’ request for the incident report that because the “case is currently an active, open investigation with MBI, all further information is considered to be part of MBI’s investigative report, pursuant to Mississippi Code Annotated §25-61-12 and Mississippi Code Annotated §25-61-3(f). Therefore, MDPS has no further responsive information, at this time.”

Police Not Releasing Full Details

At Tuesday’s press conference, Gulfport Police Chief Adam Cooper said that officers responded to a 911 call on Thursday, Oct. 6, 2022. “The Gulfport Police Department received a telephone complaint from a 911 caller about a motorist in a silver Kia Soul with a Georgia state license plate accompanied by several subjects later identified as McMillan, Bell, Thomas, Ellis and Cooper. They were brandishing firearms at passing motorists and began chasing one of them.”

Gulfport Police Chief Adam Cooper said in a Oct. 11, 2022, press briefing that the police “received a telephone complaint from a 911 caller about a motorist in a Silver Kia Soul with Georgia State license plate accompanied by several subjects,” he said. Gulfport Police

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