Protesters march in memory of Jackson - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Protesters march in memory of Jackson

March 6, 2004

Sylvester- More than one hundred people took to the streets of Sylvester in memory of 37-year old Herman Jackson, the man they say unjustly died in police custody.

"We're concerned about all citizens in Sylvester whether they be white or they be black. We just want equal treatment for all of our citizens," says Dr. Bruce Washington.

As they made their way to the Worth County Courthouse steps, they stopped to pray in the very spot where Jackson was arrested.

Reverend Judy Hall compares the death of Jackson to the September 11th attacks and is calling for all of Worth County to fight what many call a long history of police brutality.

"We say it in our pledge justice for all the time so let's be doers of those things that we're saying. Let's just don't just say them and hear them let's practice it here in our own hometown," says Reverend Hall.

"There's a lot of distrust and I think rightfully so for the GBI and internal kinds of investigations," says John Cole Vodicka of the Prison and Jail Project.

Vodicka says the more investigations into what happened on the night of February 20th, the better off the community will be. So, he contacted the U.S. Attorneys office and requested a federal investigation.

"They have informed me as recently as yesterday that they're going to have the FBI come in and take a look at what happened probably with an eye toward federal civil rights violations which could led in the long run to some criminal indictments."

Whether those indictments are handed down or not, at the very least Vodicka and others are hoping the FBI will uncover things they say the GBI overlooked the night Jackson was arrested.

The case will be heard by a grand jury March 22. The GBI continues to say there was no excessive forced used by three officers during Jackson's arrest

Posted at 6:00 PM by elaine.armstrong@walb.com

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