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Aurora officers, paramedics charged in Elijah McClain’s death plead not guilty

Elijah McClain is pictured in this undated photograph. (Photo provided by family of Elijah McClain)
Elijah McClain is pictured in this undated photograph. (Photo provided by family of Elijah McClain)

The three Aurora police officers and two paramedics charged in Elijah McClain‘s death pleaded not guilty in Adams County court Friday afternoon as the case progresses toward trial.

Officers Nathan Woodyard and Randy Roedema, former officer Jason Rosenblatt and paramedics Jeremy Cooper and Lt. Peter Cichuniec face 32 combined counts related to McClain’s violent arrest and death in August 2019.

A district court judge this week separated the proceedings for the five men into three distinct trials, each expected to last three weeks.

Roedema and Rosenblatt, who assisted in McClain’s arrest, will be tried together, with the judge setting that trial to begin July 11.

The paramedics, who injected the 23-year-old with the powerful sedative ketamine, will be tried in tandem during a trial set for Aug. 7.

And Woodyard, who put McClain in the chokehold that caused him to lose consciousness, had his trial set for Sept. 18.

All five face charges of manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide, among other counts.

Then-Adams County District Attorney Dave Young declined to prosecute the officers and paramedics involved in McClain’s death after the incident.

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