John Neville ( ‘I Can’t Breathe’ Before Jail Death) Wiki – John Neville Bio
John Neville, a 56-year-old Black man, had suffered a medical emergency while at the Forsyth County jail. He said he couldn’t’ breathe 24 times, The News & Observer reported. At one point, an officer said Neville could breathe because he was talking.
Portions of two videos of body cameras worn by officers in a North Carolina jail showed a man saying “I can’t breathe” before his December 2019 death was released on Wednesday. Nearly a dozen media outlets had requested the video to be released, including Raleigh outlet The News & Observer, the New York Times, and The Daily Beast.
Neville died in the hospital days after injuries during the incident, which resulted in five correction officers and one nurse being fired. Before the video, published on Wednesday, all six were charged with involuntary manslaughter.
Neville was in prison on charges of a pending attack when he fell from the top bunk to the concrete floor. “You are good, you are good. It looks like you had a seizure, ”says one of the male detention officers at the beginning of the video.
The footage was made public on Wednesday after a group of news outlets, including The News & Observer, a daily newspaper in Raleigh, and the Associated Press and The New York Times filed a petition for its release. The Daily Beast joined this coalition.
Five former guards and one nurse—who is employed by Wellpath, a private contractor that provides medical services for the jail—are charged with involuntary manslaughter in connection with Neville’s death, which has sparked a wave of protests and a weeks-long occupation of Bailey Park just a few blocks from the jail.
The sheriff in charge of the jail also supported making the video public, while attorneys for the officials charged in Neville’s death joined the district attorney prosecuting them in arguing against the video’s release.
Horne said he would make his decision by Friday.
“Any harm being done is by not seeing the videos,” Grace said. “Right now they’re being tainted because they’re not getting the truth.”
The News & Observer petitioned in June for the release of video footage captured in the jail that showed what happened to Neville before his death. The N&O is now joined by 10 other media outlets, including the New York Times and The Associated Press, in requesting the video’s release.
Criminal charges came seven months after Neville died and more than a week after the N&O petitioned for the video’s release.
Five officers and a nurse are charged with felony involuntary manslaughter in Neville’s death. Those charged include Detention Officers Sarah E. Poole, Antonio M. Woodley and Christopher Stamper, Cpl. Edward J. Roussel and Sgt. Lavette M. Williams, and nurse Michelle Heughins.
On Tuesday, Sheriff Bobby Kimbrough, Jr. held a press conference to publicly apologize to Neville’s family ahead of the video’s release. Neville’s son, Sean, and the family’s attorney, Michael Grace, were present for the statement.
Kimbrough said he wept over the footage, which he claimed has resulted in training and policy changes within the facility. “Your father has changed the way health care will be dispensed at the Forsyth County Detention Center, as well as how it will be dispensed throughout this region,” Kimbrough said.
“I have stood with you from the beginning … I will continue to stand with you through this process,” Kimbrough added. “History has tied us together forever and I will continue to stand with you and stand on the truth and what is right.”
The remarks came one day before officials released video footage connected to Mr. Neville’s death in response to a judge’s order. Several news organizations, including The New York Times, had sued county officials in order to obtain the material.
According to officials, Mr. Neville was charged with attacking a woman at Forsyth County prison in Winston-Salem on December 1. According to the district lawyer, she experienced a medical emergency approximately 24 hours later.
The first video shows Mr. Neville in his cell. A male detention officer tells him: “Well, you’re fine. It looks like you had a seizure. “The video then shows the officers holding Mr. Neville’s arms and legs, and one officer says,” Watch yourself, trying to bite. ” A white, clear mask appears on Mr. Neville’s head. He was handcuffed, tied to the chair and moved to another cell.
In the second video, Mr. Neville is held face to face by several officers. Mr. Neville is struggling to remove their handcuffs while yelling, “I can’t breathe.” At some point, an officer says, “You breathe because you speak” and “You need to relax.”
The officers are struggling to remove the handcuffs from Mr. Neville. The key of the clamps is broken inside the keyhole and a bolt cutter fails. “I can’t breathe,” says Mr Neville again and again, while the officers wait for someone to bring another bolt cutter. “It doesn’t look good,” one officer then says. After the clamp was removed with bolt cutters, one officer asks another if Mr. Neville is “good”.
This officer replies, “I can’t say.” The officers leave the room and Mr. Neville stays on the ground. A nurse looks through a window in the cell door and says, “I can’t say if she’s breathing.” The officers enter the room again and Mr. Neville is groaning. A nurse examines Mr. Neville and says, “I can’t hear the heart rate.” Shortly before the video ends, she starts chest compression on Mr. Neville.
Mr. Neville was later transferred to the Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center. He died two days later on December 4.
An autopsy found that Mr Neville died of brain damage due to cardiopulmonary arrest due to “positional and compression suffocation during prone restraint.” The report also stated that Mr. Neville had “acute altered mental state” and other “important conditions” including asthma.
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“This video is tragic,” said Sharif on Tuesday. “I won’t add sugar to that.”
Mr. Neville’s death was explicitly acknowledged in June by police officers and local officials who touched protests against systemic racism around the world, about a month after George Floyd was killed by police officers in Minneapolis.
At a press conference on Tuesday, Sheriff Kimbrough stated that he regretted Mr. Neville’s death and admitted that “mistakes were made that day.”
“I cried,” he said when he saw the video.
In addition to renaming the housing unit after Mr. Neville, the sheriff said he will change how the prison treats prisoners in need of medical care.
“Your father has changed how healthcare is distributed and how it is distributed in the Forsyth County detention center,” said Nevff Kimbrough.