Family of Georgia woman who died during arrest with police file wrongful death lawsuit

Prominent civil rights attorney Ben Crump (center) appears at a news conference on Wednesday, May 24, 2023, in Decatur, Ga., standing alongside the family of a Georgia woman who died after she fell out of a moving patrol car in July 2022, following her arrest. (Matthew Pearson/WABE)

The family of a Georgia mother who died after falling out of the back of a police car is suing the officers involved.

Brianna Grier was having a mental health crisis. Her mother, Mary, called 911, hoping her daughter would be taken to a hospital – that’s how the family had handled these crises in the past.

Instead, this time, the 28-year-old mother of twin girls was handcuffed by officers from the Hancock County sheriff’s office and carried by the arms and legs into the back of a police car. The lawsuit alleges Grier was dropped onto the ground, hitting her head.

In the Georgia Bureau of Investigation analysis of the case, the officers admitted they did not put Grier’s seatbelt on.

According to body cam footage, less than a minute after departing from Grier’s house, the police car reverses and an officer walks behind the car to find Grier’s body thrown from the vehicle.

Ben Crump, a civil rights and personal injury attorney who has represented the families of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, is one of the attorneys on the suit.

“Her twin daughters lost their mother because of gross negligence at the hands of the police department that was supposed to help this young, black woman who was having a mental health crisis,” he said.

The family is seeking 100 million dollars in damages.