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Sun Sep 20, 2020, 10:14 AM

4 cops charged in death of man with mental health issues- they told his family he had a heart attack

On April 5, 44-year-old Tommie McGlothen died while in police custody in Shreveport, La. In June, The Root reported that McGlothen’s family was originally told by police that he died of a heart attack, but cell phone video footage released that month showed something different. Now, four Shreveport police officers are charged with negligent homicide and malfeasance in connection with his death

Here’s what we reported in June:

The police were responding after McGlothen allegedly got into a fight with someone in the neighborhood. In April, Shreveport police told McGlothen’s family that he suffered a heart attack, but when the family went to view his body, they discovered he had a broken nose, broken jaw and the entire right side of his face was swollen.

Understandably, the family wants answers as to why Shreveport police didn’t publicly acknowledge McGlothen’s death and why they misled the family about the circumstances surrounding it.

“I just wanted to know what happened,” Tommy McGlothen III, McGlothen’s son, told KSLA. It took 54 days for the Shreveport Police Department to send an investigative report to District Attorney James Stewart. Even then, Stewart said the file was “missing reports, statements, downloads and other vital information essential to conduct a thorough and complete review.”

The video footage aired exclusively on KSLA 12 showed a white male officer hit McGlthen in the back as a Black female officer tried to hold him down.


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