Vigil for Tyre King calls for justice and change in Columbus

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The family of a 13-year-old shot and killed by a Columbus officer last September is disappointed that a grand jury decided not to indict the officer.

Officer Bryan Mason maintained, and so did the Columbus Division of Police, that Tyre King pulled what looked like a real gun from his waistband. Police later said it turned out to be a BB gun.

On Friday night supporters of King's family gathered moments after the grand jury decision.

At a candlelight vigil organized by the People's Justice Project, a small flame was lit for a young boy.

"I pray a lot for these people. For their healing in their hearts," Aaron Peaks said.

That light ignited hope for a community.

"It makes you never forget, you know it makes you keep your focus on what's really going on," Peaks said.

The people who showed up Friday night came to surround the family of Tyre King.

"Everybody is in the grieving process. They've been grieving since this happened," People's Justice Project member Amber Evans said.

Some community members said they are mourning for the family and the justice system after a grand jury decided not to charge the Columbus police officer who shot and killed 13-year-old King last year.

"They misled us to thinking that they truly were going to hold Officer Mason accountable, those involved accountable. But with the grand jury decision we obviously see that just like in the case of Henry Green that's not going to happen," Evans said.

But the People's Justice Project made sure to let the crowd of about 100 people know, the fight for justice isn't over and there is still hope for change. Inside Central SDA Church, powerful words came from a mother who has lived through the same outcome.

"I trust that God is going to work this all the way out and I do believe that justice will be served," Adrienne Hood said.

Hood's son Henry Green was also shot and killed by Columbus police. A grand jury cleared two officers of charges in March in connection with the shooting death.

At the vigil, Green's mother encouraged others to stand up for what they believe is right.

"We need all hands on deck," she said.

After 13 seconds of silence for Tyre King, everyone inside the church walked to the parking lot where Tyre was shot for a final prayer.

"When we come here and we have prayer, I think those are the things that really help," Peaks said.

Tyre King's family released a statement saying, in part, they were disappointed by the grand jury decision, but not surprised.

The president of the local police union, Jason Pappas, responded to King's killing and the grand jury decision.

"To the family I would say, this is a tragedy that no officer is celebrating tonight. For the office involved it's a tragedy just as it is for their family. I think the grand jury got it right. I don't think there's anything controversial here from my perspective. Again, the facts of the case are what the facts of the case are," Pappas said.

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