The family of Marvin Scott III, the 26-year-old Black man who died in police custody in McKinney, Texas last month; says they won’t stop protesting until justice is served in his death. Seven detention officers with the Collin County Sheriff’s Office were fired in the wake of Scott’s passing and one more resigned, but no arrests have been made.
The family told The Texas Tribune that they still have not seen the video of Scott in jail, where police pepper-sprayed him and covered his head with a spit hood. Scott, who was initially arrested for possessing less than two ounces of marijuana and suffered from schizophrenia, died later that night. A month later, the names of the detention officers involved still have not been released to the public and the county medical examiner’s office has yet to announce the cause of Scott’s death.
“Today marks 30 days since Marvin was murdered and we still haven’t seen the tape. We still don’t know the names of these officers,” Scott’s sister LaChay Batts said during a rally on Sunday (April 11). “[They] could be our neighbors and we don’t know.”
According to the Tribune, the sheriff’s office said it can’t release the names of the officers involved due to the ongoing investigation. The Texas Rangers are currently investigating the case of Scott’s death. According to Scott’s family’s lawyer, the Collin County district attorney said they can’t bring any charges against the officers without the official cause of Scott’s death, which the county medical examiner’s office has yet to produce.
Scott’s family ended up hiring a forensic pathologist to conduct an independent autopsy. During a press conference late last month, forensic pathologist Amy Gruszecki said “the physical struggle of the restraint as well as the possible asphyxia from the restraint would likely be causes of [Scott’s] death.”
She added, “And a negative autopsy, meaning no injuries [and] no blunt force trauma, is consistent with that.”
Speaking with the Tribune, Batts said she and a group of 20 to 40 protesters have assembled outside of the Collin County Jail every night to memorialize her brother. She and the others hang signs, decorate the fence with cups spelling his name and more. However, the tributes are removed every morning by the county staff.
“We just do it again,” she said. “They want us to stop; to go away. We’re gonna remain until the officers are arrested.”