Charleston, S.C. (Jan. 13, 2022 | ThePeoplesBeat.com) - Civil rights leaders joined the family of Jamal Sutherland, a mentally ill Black man who died in the Al Cannon Detention Center after being tased excessively by two deputies, to hold Ninth Circuit Solicitor, Scarlett Wilson accountable and implore her to “do the right thing.”
The Sutherland family were also joined by the families of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Daunte Wright outside the office of Ninth Circuit Solicitor, Scarlett Wilson.
Wilson said in July of 2021 that detention deputies Lindsay Fickett and Brian Houle, would not face charges because they were not properly trained.
Civil rights attorney Ben Crump, who is now representing the family said, “we got Jamal Sutherland tortured to death on video and the prosecutor chooses not to do her job for which she was elected. And the Sutherland’s don’t get their chance to hear the jury listen to the evidence and come back and render a verdict that we believe will be guilty, guilty, guilty!”
Last year the Sutherland’s were represented by Charleston attorney Mark A. Peper who often referenced Wilson’s willingness to help the family. According to Peper, the Sutherland family only saw the video of Jamal’s killing out of courtesy to the family by Solicitor Wilson, saying “She didn’t have to do it… she allowed us to see it.”
At the press conference today Jamal’s mother, Amy Sutherland, distanced herself from those perceptions saying, “when that speech was made, it was not with our consent. She’s [Wilson] been cruel to us from the beginning. That was not us. I need you to know we got new attorneys. That was not my family’s words because we knew that she was not going to do the right thing. Not our words.”
“Scarlett has lied to my family over and over again. Get to know her. She’s a liar. I’m going to call it like I see it,” said Ms. Sutherland.
Jamal’s younger brother, Jamar Sutherland, also took the podium making a powerful statement saying:
We sat there in the office. She basically told us to our face that she didn’t want to make them the escape goat. So basically, they didn't want to make them pay for the system being corrupted. These people got more compassion for the folks with the red hand than him, that was the victim that just went up there to get help. Things need to get changed.- Jamar Sutherland
Philonise Floyd, George Floyd’s brother, said that “[Jamal] was in custody and he still was murdered… The law is the law and if you’re a murderer you're supposed to be treated like a murderer. You're supposed to be put in custody. He was in custody for a mental crisis and you don't even have a mental crisis.”
Floyd was murdered in May of 2020 by Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin. Bystander footage of the crime sparked worldwide outrage and mass protests. Chauvin was convicted of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter in April of 2021.
“I need everybody to know any entity that had to do with his wrong doing and his tragedy and his death, y’all are on borrowed time. Justice is going to come,” Jamar said.
Crump implored people to “use [their] eyes – look at Daunte Wright being killed , Ahmaud Arbery being killed, George Floyd being killed, and then look at Jamal Sutherland being killed and ask yourself what's the difference? What's the difference?”
In Minnesota, Kim Potter, a former police officer was found guilty of first and second degree manslaughter. Potter says she mistook her handgun for a taser and fatally shot Wright, 20, during a traffic stop.
“When you think about Daunte Wright and this is true for Jamal Sutherland, the police had the discretion just to get him a notice to appear. But unfortunately when it’s Black people they do the most. They always do the most!” said Crump.
Today was also the one year anniversary of Jamal’s funeral. Tomorrow would have been his 33rd birthday.
“For 46 seconds [Jamal] was tased - 11 times. Seven of those charges by one officer. But yet Scarlett Wilson said she doesn’t have enough probable cause to bring charges. To at least get Amy and Deacon Sutherland their day in court,” said Crump. “We aren't asking for you to do anything that is not due process of the law.”
“Scarlett! Do the right thing! I can’t take this anymore. We have to get justice,” Ms. Sutherland screamed.