A young Black woman who was previously the victim of police brutality in London has been found dead in her jail cell.
Sarah Reed, 32, was found dead in Holloway Prison in North London last month in a case that bears frightening parallels to Sandra Bland, who mysteriously died last summer in her jail cell following a traffic stop.
CC TV captured Reed being assaulted by a police officer in a 2012 shoplifting incident. Metropolitan Police Officer James Kiddie, who was seen on camera brutally punching Reed, as well as dragging her by her hair, was found guilty of common assault in 2014. The charge was far less than many expected, especially considering that the officer reportedly had several complaints out against him, including an incident where he was found to have sprayed gas onto peaceful protestors in 2011. Kiddie was given 150 hours of community service and dismissed from the force.
Nearly four years after that incident, Reed, who suffered from mental illness, was arrested for assault in a case with extremely sketchy details. In October of last year, she was arrested after an altercation at a hospital where she was being detained. There are reports that she acted in self defense in the incident and that she was the victim of an alleged sexual assault. When authorities were called, it was Reed who was arrested, rather than her assailant.
She was taken to a prison to await trial and it was there that she mysteriously died.
Last month, they were informed of her death after having “strangled herself” while lying on her bed, in spite of the improbability of that being possible. When the family was asked to identify her body, they were reportedly treated with hostility and prevented from seeing her.
Prison officials claim they attempted CPR, but gave no more information beyond it.
According to The Guardian, her family is also concerned as to why a woman who was suffering from mental health problems was removed from a hospital and sent to a prison instead.
Reed, for all accounts, had suffered profound tragedy in her life. Her mental problems reportedly began in 2003 following the death of her newborn child. She and the child’s father were said to have been traumatized after being forced to carry the child’s body in their own car from a hospice to an undertaker.
Twitter users have been demanding justice for Reed and are skeptical of the circumstances surrounding her death.
We will keep you posted on updates as well get them.