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Concern Over Transparency In Police Investigations

Jamie Smith’s mother and brother

Jamie Smith’s family is still seeking answers about how he could have died of asphyxia last month within hours of being arrested.

Earla Dorch, his mother, said that Smith, 35, had no medical problems. The family wants to know what caused a healthy young man to choke to death.

Christina Galanos, the family’s lawyer, said, “His death certificate lists the cause of death as asphyxia, which means he was unable to breathe normally.

Circumstances surrounding his death are still unknown but what is known is that on February 8 Smith was arrested in good health and two hours later he was dead at the Central Detective Unit.

National Security Minister, Dr. Bernard Nottage, referred to Smith as a ‘victim’ when he announced that the officers from the Central Detective Unit had been placed on administrative leave.

Galanos said the family wants a transparent and impartial investigation.

In a Nassau Guardian article Galanos was quoted, “As far as I’m aware, all suspicious deaths are investigated by the homicide division at the Central Detective Unit.

“The officers who have been placed on leave in relation to Smith’s death also work there. How well can the police force investigate itself?”

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