The community is still waiting for the results of the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) investigation into the murder of Corey Andrews at the hands of Celina Police Officers last August. On August 25, 2023, at 2:12 am, Celina Police were conducting an investigation near a pond when they claimed they observed Corey’s SUV parked in the nearby park, detecting an odor of marijuana. This was prior to cannabis legalization approved by Ohio voters in November. According to police reports, Officer David Powell approached Corey’s vehicle and some type of escalation ensued, resulting in him discharging his weapon. Corey Andrews, a young life full of potential, was pronounced dead upon arrival at Mercer Health Hospital in Coldwater.
Celina Police Chief Tom Wale spoke at a press conference, stating that the BCI is looking into the matter. Five months later with no answers and the investigation still ongoing, we find it concerning that the clock is still ticking on how long the Andrews family must wait to pursue accountability.
Chief Wale believes the officers were justified in their actions, stating “It is my belief at this point in time that they followed policy to a tee. They followed the law. They were acting in defense of their lives. They were justified." You can read his statement here.
This is yet another instance where the police dictate the narrative presented, prior to any external investigation into the facts. There is zero consideration for the victim's perspective.
You can watch the bodycam footage from each officer here (provided from an external source). Please be advised – this footage is raw and heartbreaking. Viewer discretion is advised.
It is disheartening that Mayor Jeffrey Hazel declined to disclose whether any officers have been placed on administrative leave. He also noted, "There are some traumatic issues with some of the officers," without providing any further details.
What are “traumatic issues”? How do these impact their ability to care for the Celina community? How many more lives are at risk?
In times like these, our community must come together to seek justice and demand transparency. We stand in solidarity with Corey Andrews' family and encourage you to join us in supporting them.
OFUPAC contacted BCI to request an update on the status of this investigation and were told the investigation is still ongoing. We will continue to pursue closure of the investigation and accountability for the family. As we await the results of the ongoing BCI investigation, we commit to keeping you informed and advocating for a thorough examination of this incident. Our deepest condolences go out to Corey Andrews' family and friends.
For those seeking justice, let us raise our voices and demand accountability. Send a letter to Ohio lawmakers demanding they institute true accountable policing mechanisms permanently here.