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Rep. Mace Issues Statement on Death of Jamal Sutherland



Congresswoman Nancy Mace (SC-01) on Friday released the following statement regarding the death of Jamal Sutherland:

“I just watched Jamal Sutherland’s mother give a moving speech and my heart hurts for her.

I also echo her words and ask everyone in our community to honor them at this time and ensure there is no violence in our streets.

My heart is broken for Jamal Sutherland’s family. This is every parent’s worst nightmare. I don’t get it.

I’m heartbroken, angry, and confused. Our community is feeling tremendous pain. I just do not understand how this could happen – again.

The video released last night by the Charleston County Sheriff showing the final moments of Jamal’s life is horrific.

Jamal was in custody. He was alone in a jail cell. He was not a threat to anyone in that moment.

No one deserves the death penalty for missing a bond hearing or for being a mental health patient.

I, for the life of me, cannot comprehend the level of force used inside his jail cell to get him to a bond hearing he was not required by law to attend.

I will never understand the unnecessary loss of life.

I am calling on the FBI and SLED to conduct a full, thorough and fair investigation. Anyone who may be responsible should be held accountable.

I am committed to working with our local community, state and local agencies, our law enforcement, and my colleagues, to pursue reforms which will ensure no other family has to face the pain Jamal’s family is feeling today.

I am also committed to working to ensure our law enforcement agencies have the resources and support they need for better training, especially when it comes to the mental health crisis our country faces today.

How we handle mental illness can mean life or death.

In the meantime, as this case is investigated, anyone connected to this event should be placed on Administrative Leave immediately and until the investigation is resolved.

I want justice for Jamal’s family, too. But I urge all those who want to take to the streets to protest to do so peacefully.

You have every right to have your voices heard.

Be loud. Be strong. Be peaceful.

My voice will be right there along with you.”
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