The first annual Flint, Michigan, Juneteenth National Independence Day parade on June 19 had to be rerouted after there was a fatal shootout with police. Briana Sykes, a 19-year-old woman, allegedly fired a shot at a police officer standing at a checkpoint on the Saginaw Street parade route at 2:14 p.m. Sykes died from shots when the officer fired back. The parade was commemorating the freeing of the slaves in the United States.
Michigan State Police are investigating the shooting for the Flint police. The officer who fell to the ground after Briana fired her shot is on paid leave. All witness video recordings show that Briana fired a shot at the officer before he fired back. His life was clearly in danger.
The Michigan State Police investigating the police shooting collected surveillance videos from surrounding businesses in the immediate area to ensure that the officer correctly followed appropriate protocol to secure the area and ensure the safety of all parade participants.
Briana can be heard on cellphone audio shouting obscenities and saying she wanted the officer on the ground. She died in the hospital, and no parade participants or spectators were injured or shot.
Lt. Kim Vetter of the Michigan State Police stated that the officer was not wearing a body camera at the time of the incident. Briana’s motivation for the shooting is unknown. Vetter assured the public that her investigation will be thorough.
Residents with lawn chairs hoping to enjoy the parade after a long period of social distancing were stunned by the new threat to their safety. The Detroit Free Press reports mass shootings increased 50% in Michigan from 2020 to 2021.