9 Deputies Fired Over Death Of Black Man Who Was Tasered While Restrained

Nine sheriff’s deputies in Chatham County, Ga., were fired on Friday following an investigation by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation into the death of black inmate Matthew Ajibade in January.

The Chatham County Sheriff’s Office said that Ajibade, who suffered from bipolar disorder, died after a deputy use a Taser on him and he was placed in isolation in a restraining chair, according to Georgia television station WTOC.

Ajibade’s family alleges that a deputy used a Taser on Ajibade while he was in the restraining chair and then left him unattended, according to NBC News. Ajibade was booked and restrained by deputies after he allegedly hit his girlfriend and broke a police officer’s nose.

The Chatham County sheriff, which also conducted an investigation into Ajibade’s death and office procedures, announced new policies on Friday, including new medical procedures and a policy on when Tasers cannot be used.

The memo from the sheriff’s office said that their policy prohibits deputies from using a Taser on an inmate who is already in restraints.

“Less than lethal force may only be used to gain control over a non-compliant and/or aggressive subject, and is never applied maliciously or as punishment,” the memo reads, according to the Savannah Morning News.

Ajibade’s cause of death has not yet been released and Chatham County District Attorney Meg Heap said that the investigation into Ajibade’s death and the deputies’ actions will not be released to the public until her office finishes reviewing the materials.

“I want this case to be tried in a court room, not a court of public opinion,” Heap told the Savannah Morning News.

Heap said that the case will likely go before a grand jury next month.

Following the investigation, the Chatham County Sheriff’s office also fired two deputies for violations unrelated to Ajibade’s death.

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