Family of man who died hours after arrest seeking answers

Published 6:13 am Wednesday, May 19, 2021

The family of a man who died hours after being taken into custody by deputies in central Mississippi is seeking answers about his death.

Cory Jackson of Brandon died early Saturday morning, WLBT-TV reports. While the Rankin County Sheriff’s Department says he was pronounced dead at a hospital, Jackson’s younger sister Megan Jackson said the deputy coroner told the family he died at the jail.

“Nobody deserves to die scared and alone in a cell when someone is supposed to protect you,” Megan Jackson told WLBT.

She said the family called the sheriff’s department for help because Jackson needed medical attention for injuries and his hallucinations made it difficult to get him to a hospital.

“He has a mental illness. He’s schizophrenic, you know, he has drug-induced psychosis. He is bipolar. He has multiple personalities, he is delusional,” the sister added.

She told the station that deputies assumed her brother was on drugs because of his behavior. She said Jackson had been with their mother the whole day and she had his money. While the family said he had used drugs many times before, he didn’t that day.

“The cop was like, ‘well, this is obviously drugs.’ And we were like, ‘no, it’s not’,” Megan Jackson said.
According to the woman, deputies charged Jackson with disorderly conduct so they could bring him in for treatment.

Rankin County Sheriff’s Department spokesperson Paul Holley told WLBT that Jackson was pronounced dead at a hospital after he was put in jail. His sister said the deputy coroner told her family a different version of what happened.

“When they went in to check, he was gone. They said he passed at the jail,” Megan Jackson said. “The (deputy) coroner said that he was still in handcuffs when he was found dead.”

Coroner David Ruth couldn’t confirm to the station what the family members said but told the station that Jackson’s body was sent for an autopsy. Holley said the case was turned over to the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation.

Jackson’s sister and his mother Joyce Reddell said they don’t believe he received medical treatment once he was put in jail.

“He doesn’t have to run anymore from his demons, but I hate it had to be this way,” Reddell said.