First Court Hearing Held in Wrongful Death Lawsuit

Family blames police for death of Philadelphia, Miss. man; lawsuit filed (Image 1)

NESHOBA COUNTY,  Miss.-  A family is alleging that their loved one died at the hands of police officers. They say Michael McDougle died in the Neshoba County Jail.

Wednesday, the case went before Judge Carlton Reeves. Legal counsel for Neshoba County and Philadelphia Police Department asked for a summary hearing, which is along the lines of asking for the case to be dismissed. Reeves said the case would continue in a discovery phase that includes gathering more information and depositions.

Attorney Carlos Moore represents McDougle’s family, “There’s a lot of bad things that continue to go on in Neshoba county. My key witness is continually harassed by Neshoba county law enforcement personnel. We are very leery about being in Neshoba county. We’re going to try to do most of our discovery outside that county because those people seem to be out of control.”

 

According to a witness, Michael McDougle, was beaten and tasered by officers of the Philadelphia Police Department on November 1, 2014 while in handcuffs.

“I didn’t like the way they pulled him out of that car by his head,” said Dave Spivey, an eyewitness. He said he saw that happen and more once inside the jail.

“They tasered him and he peed himself,” he said.

McDougle was held overnight and found dead in his cell on November 2nd.

“I miss him every day,” his mom Mary McDougle said. “I can’t go on.”

Neshoba County Attorney Wade White sent this statement that said in part, “It is sad that Mr. McDougle passed and our hearts go out to his family.  But the fact remains that Neshoba County did nothing that caused Mr. McDougle’s death.”

A lawsuit has been filed in federal court by the family. It names Neshoba Sheriff Tommy Waddell, Philadelphia Police Chief Grant Meyers and officers Brad Crockett,  Eric Lowndes and Brad Poe.

McDougle was taken into custody the day before he died for breaking and entering. He had a previous charge for shoplifting.

 

 

McDougle’s cause of death was head trauma. The medical examiner also listed a mixture of drugs in his system when he died.  Following his death, Neshoba County turned the investigation over to the Mississippi Bureau of Investigations.

 

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