Family of Georgia woman who died after falling out of patrol car files $100 million civil lawsuit

The family of Briana GrierA Georgia mother who died after falling from a sheriff’s patrol car last summer has filed a $100 million federal civil rights lawsuit against the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office, it was announced Wednesday.

The wrongful-death lawsuit, obtained by CBS News, names Hancock County Sheriff Tomlin Primus, his brother, Lt. Marlon Primus, and Deputy Timothy Leggett as defendants.

It alleges that the deputies “unlawfully and knowingly seized and restrained” Grier, “falsely arrested” her, and “picked her up and dropped her several times, ignoring her cries for help.” did and deprived him of medical attention, injured his head and brain. and ultimately caused his death, misrepresented the true facts and defamed him.”

“This young, beautiful black woman needs help,” civil rights attorney Ben Crump, who is representing Greer’s family in the lawsuit, told reporters at a news conference Wednesday.

On July 15, 2022, Grier’s parents called 911 after their daughter, a diagnosed schizophrenic, allegedly threatened to harm herself and her twin daughters at a home in Sparta, Georgia.

Two responding deputies handcuffed Greer and struggled to hold him. In the back of a patrol carthe Georgia Bureau of Investigation said at the time.

Less than a minute into the drive, Grier somehow fell out of the back passenger door of the police car, and landed face down on the side of the road, breathing but unconscious. He died of his injuries six days later.

Interviews conducted in the patrol car, body camera footage and “mechanical tests” revealed that the car’s rear passenger-side door, near which Grier was sitting when she fell, was pushed into the vehicle, the GBI said. “Never closed” after placing. the car

The complaint alleges that the defendants “acted jointly and in concert with each other.” “Each defendant had the duty and opportunity to defend Grier against the unlawful actions of the other defendants,” but each defendant refused to perform such duty, causing the complaint to cause nearly as much injury. was done.”

Greer’s family, however, said the Hancock County sheriff later told them she collapsed after kicking the door open.

“They tried to say that Briana Grier, this 120-pound, young black woman, mother of twin daughters … had superhuman strength and opened the door for the police,” Crump told Grier’s family members Wednesday. said while joining with “They wanted us to believe it, they wanted us to sweep it under the rug. Well thank God you have a family that said, ‘It’s not true.’ They wanted answers because the fact is they never locked that door and never secured that car. And she fell out of that car when they were on the road, and because she was handcuffed, there was no way to fall. There was no way.”

“There is no excuse and no justification for why Brianna Grier died and why she died in such a horrible way,” Crump added.

CBS News reached out to the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office for comment, but did not immediately hear back.

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