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Matthew Burroughs

Matthew Burroughs

Birth date:

January 9, 1983

Death date:

January 2, 2019

Age at Death:



Born in Youngstown, Ohio, the son of William A. and Zelma Yancy Glenn-Burroughs. Mr. Burroughs lived in the Niles area for 13 years. He was employed with Labor Ready for 13 years as an equipment operator and attended ITT Technical Institute. He was a member of Second Baptist Church and was a musical lyricist, aspiring rapper and graphic novel artist.He was survived by one daughter, Ms. Jayla Burroughs of Warren. He is also survived by his father, one brother, five sisters, four half-brothers, and a host of nephews, nieces, cousins and friends. He wanted to start a business but struggled to make a living. He was gentle with children. He was killed one week prior to his 36th birthday.

Police body camera video was not activated until after the event but a bystander video was reviewed. On January 2, 2019, police in Niles, Ohio, were alerted to a black male who had fled the courthouse as a probation officer tried to stop him. Several officers followed Mr. Burroughs to his apartment complex. Within a few seconds, his car was boxed in. The officer #1 was standing in front of Mr. Burroughs’s car gun drawn, yelling for him to stop. Mr. Burroughs put the car in reverse, but there was a police cruiser directly behind him. He put it back in drive, wanting to get away, but officer #1 was still near the front passenger side fender, partially blocking the way. Less than 10 seconds elapsed between police apprehending his vehicle and when the shooting started. Officer #1 fired first — three shots through the windshield, hitting Mr. Burroughs in the chest. Five more shots came through the back window from officer #2. Mr. Burroughs died at the scene, he was unarmed.

Was justice served?

No. He was unarmed at the time of the shooting. The case of can a vehicle be reason for a fatal shooting is the open question. The case was referred to the Department of Justice as of October, 2019. The bystander videos showed Mr. Burroughs’s car stopped, surrounded by officers in a state of extreme agitation. All guns were drawn. Everybody was yelling at Mr. Burroughs and at each other. “Crossfire! Crossfire!” one officer yelled, alerting the others not to shoot for fear that they’d hit an officer on the other side of the vehicle. Within seconds, most of the officers activated their bodycams, which they had forgotten to do in the heat of the moment. One officer busted out the passenger side window. Another opened the driver’s side door and jerked on Mr. Burroughs’s arm. An officer behind him spoke up, “He’s out!” Mr. Burroughs’s body was pulled, his foot came off the brake, which sent the car smashing into a wooden fence and into a parked car. The victim's girlfriend had called the police two weeks prior on a domestic disturbance charge, which triggered the events that eventually led to his death.

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