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On the 3-month anniversary of his death, community rallies for #Justice4Jalen

By staff |
August 13, 2019
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 Vigil demands justice for Jalen Mays.
Vigil demands justice for Jalen Mays. (Fight Back! News/Staff)

Jacksonville, FL - On August 2, the Jacksonville Community Action Committee (JCAC) and the family of Jalen Mays held a vigil to remember his life on the three-month anniversary of his death. At the vigil, the protesters chanted, “Justice for Jalen.”

The family has been calling for accountability and transparency since his death on the morning of May 2, at Orange Park Medical Center. His death occurred a day after being detained after what is believed to be a violent arrest by Jacksonville Sheriff’s Officers S.R Maddox and M.J Reddish. Those two officers had previously been placed on administrative leave according to JSO but are now back on active duty.

Just weeks ago controversy emerged as the disciplinary records for one of the officers involved was deleted by the JSO. They call it an administrative error.

According to media reports Mays was possibly hogtied, and required placement in the intensive care unit at Orange Park Medical Center. His family says his body had bruises, welts and other effects consistent with trauma.

The JCAC is supporting Jalen’s family’s demands for an independent autopsy as well as the release of convenience store video footage from the arrest and body camera footage from the officers involved. The family is demanding that more funding in the Jacksonville upcoming budget to be allocated to mental health in the city and not towards additional JSO funding.

"When someone is experiencing a mental health crisis, they should not be responded to by police. It needs to be responded to as a medical issue," María García of the Jacksonville Community Action Committee said at the vigil.