Chief calls to terminate cop who shot Andre Hill as family mourns loss this Christmas

The chief referred to Hill's death as "preventable" and "senseless violence."

The police chief of Columbus, Ohio, has called for the immediate termination of a police officer involved in the fatal shooting of an unarmed Black man earlier this week.

The police officer, identified as Adam Coy, a 19-year veteran of the Columbus Division of Police, was stripped of all police powers after it was discovered that he did not turn on his body camera until after fatally shooting Andre Hill, 47, early Tuesday.

Body camera footage of the incident released Wednesday also showed the officer did not appear to provide immediate aid to Hill.

In a statement Thursday announcing his recommendation for Coy's termination, Columbus Police Chief Thomas Quinlan referred to Hill's death as "preventable" and "senseless violence."

"Like all of you, I witnessed his critical misconduct firsthand via his body-worn camera," he said. "I have seen everything I need to see to reach the conclusion that Officer Coy must be terminated, immediately."

Quinlan filed two departmental charges alleging critical misconduct against officer Coy, which he said were sustained after an expedited investigation. Quinlan bypassed the usual hearing he holds with an officer, and said it is not a rush to judgment.

"We have an officer who violated his oath to comply with the rules and policies of the Columbus Division of Police. And the consequences of that violation are so great, it requires immediate action," Quinlan said. "This violation cost an innocent man his life."

Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther has also called for Coy's termination.

Hill's family reacted to the footage in an interview Thursday with "Good Morning America," set to air Saturday.

"These cops are too aggressive. They were cussing out my dad after they shot him," Hill's daughter, Karissa Hill, said. "If you watch the video you can hear him gasping for his last breaths and they're just cussing at him, put his hands behind his back and move his hands and he's laying there shot."

Ned Pettus Jr., the city's director of public safety, will rule on the chief's recommendation after a hearing Monday morning.

"My commitment, my legal obligation, is to conduct a fair and impartial hearing, and that is what I intend to do," Pettus said at a press conference Wednesday.

Hill was shot early Tuesday after officers were dispatched to a "non-emergency" disturbance call from a neighbor who allegedly saw a man sitting in an SUV for an extended period of time turning his car on and off, according to the Columbus Department of Public Safety.

In the body camera footage released Wednesday, Hill is seen coming out of a garage with a cellphone in his left hand and his right hand obscured before Coy opens fire.

Coy is then seen approaching Hill and ordering that he show his hands and roll over, before asking a colleague if medics have been called. Coy does not administer aid to the victim, according to the footage.

Hill was taken to Riverside Hospital where he was pronounced dead, investigators said.

No weapon was found at the scene, and none of the other responding officers had their cameras on until after Hill was shot, according to investigators.

Two investigations are currently underway in the Columbus Division of Police. One entails Coy's use of deadly force, failure to activate his body-worn camera and failure to render aid, Quinn said. The second involves the additional officers tied to the incident, who also either failed to activate their body-worn cameras or render aid.

"Any other officers found to have violated policy will be held accountable," Quinn said in his statement Thursday.

The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation is handling the criminal investigation of Hill's death. On Thursday, the acting prosecutor for Franklin County, Ohio, where Columbus is located, appointed the state's attorney general, David Yost, as a special assistant in the case.

Hill's family doesn't think firing Coy goes far enough, and want charges pressed against the officer.

"I not only want justice for Andre. I want justice for everyone who has been done wrong," Shawna Barnett, Hill's sister, told "Good Morning America." "I don't think him retiring or leaving his job is good enough. I need for him to do serious time because that was completely uncalled for."

The family also wants the 911 call and dispatch recordings released.

"What was told to this officer on this non-emergency call -- why he felt it necessary to shoot a man who he was investigating for a noise disturbance?" Ben Crump, the family's attorney, told "Good Morning America."

About 100 people marched Thursday in the neighborhood where Hill was killed, shouting "Say his name." The rally was held a day after the funeral for Casey Goodson Jr., a Black man who was shot and killed by a sheriff's deputy at the doorstep of his Columbus home earlier this month.

"We didn't even get to lay the last Black man down before they killed the next," organizer Sierra Mason told Columbus ABC affiliate WSYX.

"I'm just appalled," she told the station. "Once I saw the body-cam footage, I became enraged."

Hill's family plans to hold a candlelight vigil in his honor on Saturday, after their first Christmas without him.

"My kids called him 'Big Daddy' because they looked up to him, so they don't even understand what is going on right now. They just think their Big Daddy is coming home for Christmas," Karissa Hill told "Good Morning America." "It's just so hard because I haven't even got that far processing on how my dad's not going to be walking through these doors for Christmas."

ABC News' Ivan Pereira contributed to this report.

Top Stories

Top Stories

Top Stories

Top Stories

ABC News Live

ABC News Live

24/7 coverage of breaking news and live events