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Ex-Colorado officer gets 14 months in jail for the death of Elijah McClain

Randy Roedema, who was convicted of third-degree assault, was also sentenced to four years of probation for negligent homicide

Randy Roedema

Colorado ex-police officer Randy Roedema speaks on his behalf during sentencing at the Adams County Court, Friday, Jan. 5, 2024, in Brighton, Colorado.


By Colleen Slevin
Associated Press

DENVER — A former Colorado officer was sentenced Friday to 14 months in jail in the death of Elijah McClain.

Colorado District Judge Mark Warner sentenced ex-Aurora police officer Randy Roedema to the jail time for a third-degree assault conviction, ordering that some of that time may be served as work release toward 200 hours — or five weeks — of community service.

The judge also sentenced Roedema to four years of probation on a conviction for negligent homicide.

Among the three officers charged in McClain’s 2019 death, Roedema was the only one found guilty. The judge had discretion to sentence Roedema to either probation or time in jail or prison.

Roedema spoke at the hearing, as well as his sister and former military colleagues — he was a U.S. Marine who was wounded in Iraq.

“I want the McClain family to know the sadness I feel about Elijah being gone. He was young,” Roedema said.

In a separate trial, two paramedics were recently convicted for injecting McClain with an overdose of the sedative ketamine after police put him in a neck hold. Sentencing will come later this year for the paramedics, who had been trained to use ketamine to treat “ excited delirium ” — a disputed condition some say is unscientific, rooted in racism, and used to justify excessive force.

Roedema suggested Friday that first responders get more training in how to deal with such situations that led to McClain being given an overdose.

“Ultimately the situation has caused a lot of pain and we are faced with the choice of how to deal with it,” Roedema said.