CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – The family of Jamal Sutherland, who died at the hands of Charleston County Detention Center Deputies in January, has hired civil rights attorney Ben Crump as counsel.

Crump is known for representing the families of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and other victims of alleged excessive force by law enforcement.


On Tuesday, Crump and the Sutherland family called for the deputies involved in Sutherland’s death — Lindsey Fickett and Brian Houle — to be criminally charged.

Ninth Circuit Solicitor Scarlett Wilson previously declined to press charges against the deputies, saying that the video of Sutherland’s death alone wasn’t enough to bring charges. She called for a further investigation by the Department of Justice.

Following the press conference, Wilson released a statement reading in part:

“I understand the frustration that some may have with my decision. I will not stand in the way of a
review by the South Carolina Attorney General or the United States Department of Justice. In
fact, I invited the Department of Justice to investigate this matter in April of this year. I provided
my report to the public at large, to the Department of Justice and to our state Attorney General.
While I stand by my decision, I welcome the review of other prosecutors, especially those with
different statutory options.”

The Sutherland family and Charleston County came to a $10 million wrongful death settlement, which appeared to release liability in civil suits against the deputies.