We recently discussed the strange death of Chavis Carter, who according to Arkansas authorities somehow managed to shoot himself in the back of a patrol car while handcuffed.
Now an autopsy report claims the victim had at least trace amounts of drugs in his blood and shot himself in his left temple. But Carter’s supporters still feel like their questions haven’t been answered.
Police have yet to release extremely important evidence, including gunpowder residue test results and dashboard audio and video records. In addition, supporters want to know how Carter – who was left-handed and searched twice by police – managed to obtain a gun and shoot himself in the right temple while handcuffed.
For now, the authorities control most of the information. The family is left to question everything.
And that’s not uncommon. If and when police brutality happens, it can be very difficult for victims to prove it. The offending person holds most of the power. Families may claim their loved one was in no way suicidal, but their cries fall to deaf ears.
Any time someone – criminal, drug addict, it doesn’t matter! – is taken into custody or dealt with by police, absolutely every precaution should be taken to prevent physical harm. It is not the right of authorities to hurt suspects; and they should do everything in their power to protect citizens from harming themselves, too.
That’s why – even without all the evidence in – the Carter case looks so much like wrongful death, rather than just suicide. Somehow this man managed to have a gun pointed at his head while in the back of a police car. That fact alone is terrible, preventable, wrongful.
Now there’s a similar story out of Indiana, where a 17-yr-old managed to strangle himself with a seat belt while handcuffed.
Is the most dangerous place in America right now the back of a police car? Are precautions really being taken to protect arrested suspects?
If you or someone you know has been injured it custody, you need to talk with an attorney. You’re the underdog; and while you may not be able to launch a massive investigation into what happened in that car, or that cell, or that holding room, a lawyer certainly can.
(Photo by Sanja Gjenero)