Photo: Douglas Sacha via Getty Images
  /  05.24.2023

A Georgia family is taking the next step toward seeking justice for their loved one after she died during a police encounter last year.

Today (May 24), the family of Brianna Grier, 28, announced they have filed a $100 million civil lawsuit over her death. According to Fox 5, the suit is led by civil rights attorney Ben Crump.

On July 15, 2022, city police responded to a call at Grier’s home in Sparta, Georgia. At the time, she reportedly experienced a schizophrenic episode. Later, bodycam footage showed deputies struggling briefly with Grier, who appeared distraught. Officers were viewed carrying the 28-year-old out of her home in handcuffs.

In the video, Grier told police she was not drunk and repeatedly offered to take a breathalyzer. The young mother was also heard threatening her own life. After deputies placed Grier in the patrol car without a seat belt, they drove away. Within a minute of the drive, Grier fell from the unsecured vehicle. The car then stopped. An officer got out and walked a few feet back up the road to where Grier could be seen on the ground.

Grier was transported to a hospital with a fatal brain injury that left her in a coma. She passed away six days later. The family’s attorney said an autopsy revealed she suffered multiple skull fractures and severe brain swelling. Afterward, Grier’s loved ones demanded full accountability for her death. However, Ocmulgee Circuit District Attorney T. Wright Barksdale declined to bring the case to a civil or criminal grand jury.

In the lawsuit, two deputies and the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office are listed. The suit claims they “participated in gross negligence,” resulting in Grier’s wrongful death. “We call for change in Georgia,” Attorney Gerald Griggs said at the news conference. “What happened to Brianna Grier should never have happened.” 



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