Denver faces angry violinists over death in police custody

Denver faces angry violinists over death in police custody


norman lebrecht

June 28, 2020

A number of violinists are flying into Denver, Colorado, this weekend to protest the death of a friend in police custody 10 months ago. The police officers involved have been reassigned but not charged.

Elijah McClain, 23, died after being put into a chokehold for alleged suspicious behaviour.

He was a trained massage therapist and violinist.

The case may now be reopened.

BBC report here.




  • Violinhead says:

    I heard about this young man. In the photo, it looks like he’s playing for cats in a shelter. How kind and sensitive he was. The world is a poorer place without him.

  • ThrownOutOfTheKremlinForSinging says:

    Well, the police had better be careful. Violinists can be very dangerous. This one, for instance:

  • Peter San Diego says:

    The sheer number of instances of such police brutality coming to light over the past several weeks is stomach-turning. In this case, Mr McClain was walking home with a grocery store shopping bag when he was stopped by police and accused of “looking suspicious.” Nothing more, and that led to his death a quarter hour later.

    • Karl says:

      Someone CALLED the police on him and reported McClain was “acting odd” and wearing a ski mask as he walked home. What are police supposed to do, ignore complaints? I used to have to walk home at night when I was a teenager and I got stopped and questioned by police all the time. It has even happened to me in the past few years when someone made a peeping tom complaint. I didn’t get roughed up because I cooperated with the police.