MONTEGO BAY, Jamaica — Two prominent U.S.-based attorneys, who represented the family of murdered Florida teenager Trayvon Martin, have joined forces with attorney Miguel Lorne to represent the grieving family of Mario Deane to seek justice for his controversial death while in the custody of the Barnett Street police in early August.
Jasmine Rand, a civil rights attorney and human rights activist, and Benjamin Crump, president-elect of the National Bar Association, have opted to join attorney Lorne and the legal team and lend their support. Crump also represents the family of Michael Brown, who was killed under controversial circumstances by police in Ferguson, Missouri.
Deane, 31, was beaten, allegedly by fellow inmates, after he was arrested on Aug. 3 for possession of a small amount of ganja. He was denied bail after he voiced his dislike for the police and later taken to hospital after suffering severe injuries. He died three days later.
The police initially told doctors at the Cornwall Regional Hospital that Deane fell off a bunk, which led his relatives and friends to stage a massive demonstration in Montego Bay to protest his killing, which they blamed on the police.
Other demonstrations were staged by civil society groups and cries of condemnation rang out in the aftermath of Deane’s death.
His autopsy has been postponed until his relatives secure the services of an independent pathologist to oversee the examination.
Two of Deane’s fellow inmates have since been charged with his death.
Trayvon Martin was killed in 2012 in the U.S. by George Zimmerman, who trailed him and shot him several times even though the teenager was unarmed. Michael Brown’s death om Aug. 9 is the latest in a long line of young Black men who have died at the hands of the American police under controversial circumstances. Brown’s death has triggered a rash of demonstrations and rioting in Ferguson and forced American authorities to call out the National Guard to restore order.
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