/  06.09.2020

Over 500,000 people have signed the petition to reopen the mysterious case of Tamla Horsford. In 2018, Horsford was found dead in a backyard after she attended an adult slumber party. Her death was ruled in accident and authorities believed no foul play was involved. Some of the attendees of the slumber party reportedly had ties with law enforcement.

Earlier this week, Ralph Fernandez, the family’s attorney, wrote an explosive letter saying his review of evidence “reflects that homicide is a strong possibility.”

“It appears Tamla was involved in a struggle. There were abrasions consistent with that scenario. There were parallel scratches to one arm. Since they were fresh, photos would not have proven recent use of defensive force,” the letter, obtained by Channel 2’s Mike Petchenik, said. “There was one X-ray, yet the injury noted as the cause of death appears nowhere.”

“Witness statements are in conflict. A potential subject handled the body as well as the evidence prior to law enforcement arriving. Evidence was disposed of and no inquiry followed. The scene was not preserved,” the letter continued. “A remarkable fact is that there were no photographs taken during the autopsy of Tamla’s body. This had to have been done at someone’s directive because such a practice is unheard of.”

Fernandez also brought up the Ahmaud Arbery case to bring attention to what he feels are longstanding issues when it comes to investigating deaths in the Black community. “Here we are fighting an uphill battle because those who wear the badges were entrusted with the investigatory task, failed you,” he wrote. “But, this is not over.”

Michelle Graves, Horsford’s close friend, has been outspoken on numerous occasions saying that her friend’s death was not an accident. “They’re totally lying,” Graves said on a phone call with Petchenik last year. “They’re not out of the woods, because this was not an accident.”

The Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office says they have completed a thorough investigation, but welcome any new information from the family’s attorney. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation says photographs were taken of Horsford’s body and they stand behind their original findings.

Read the full letter below.


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