Jamal Sutherland, 31, died on January 5, 2021, at the Charleston County jail in Charleston, S.C.
He was there because he had been arrested the previous night on misdemeanor assault charges after allegedly being involved in a fight at the mental health facility where he was being treated.
On Jan. 5 deputies were attempting to force him out of his cell and into handcuffs so that he could be taken to court. They repeatedly tased him after he refused to be handcuffed and leave his cell. The deputies repeatedly ordered him to kneel and they pepper-sprayed him. One deputy put his knee on Sutherland’s back for more than two minutes as he was handcuffed. In a video of the incident Sutherland can be heard saying “I can’t breathe.” An hour later, he was pronounced dead.
In May 2021 Sutherland’s family hired a lawyer in order to file a lawsuit. In August 2021 Charleston County Sheriff’s Office released its internal investigation related to the in-custody death of Jamal Sutherland.
MASS MEDIA ABOUT THE CASE:
“Mental illness does not give anybody the right to put their hands on my child,” Sutherland’s mother, Amy Sutherland, said.
Council Chairman Teddie Pryor said: “We know that no amount of money will bring their loved one back, but I think this starts the healing process. This should never happen to anyone ever again. Ever.”
The initiative group has requested the clarification from US President Joseph Biden and Attorney General Merrick Garland. The initiative group believes it is important to fight against police brutality and, if necessary, will provide legal and financial assistance to the family of the victim.