Family of man who died in MPD custody demanding justice

Family of man who died in MPD custody demanding justice

By WTMJ News Team. CREATED Sep 24, 2012 - UPDATED: Sep 24, 2012

MILWAUKEE- Derek Williams' family is finding some comfort in knowing that the Milwaukee County district attorney is looking into his death.  His family told TODAY'S TMJ4 they knew all along his death was suspicious.

Now that a new medical examiner's report calls the death a homicide, they're hoping justice finally comes.

Williams' aunt, Maeleen Jordan said her family demands to know how anyone could view this video and consider this common police practice.

"It's one thing for your child to die that's painful, but for your child to be murdered especially in the hands of those who are to protect and serve it's unreal," said Jordan.

The medical examiner originally said Williams, who was arrested for burglary, died of natural cause -- due to the sickle cell crisis.

"This is the way police departments cover up the deaths of minorities period," said attorney Robin Shellow, who represents Williams' mother.

Shellow claims the medical examiner, district attorney and police watched the video and still closed the case.  She argues Williams was gasping for air due to one reason.

"Because fellow officers restrained him and broke a bone in his neck so he couldn't breathe, he was murdered."

As the family waits for justice, the officers involved are off the streets on desk duty.

"I just hope it's (solved) through the courts," said Jordan.

Williams' attorney says she requested an independent agency look into the case.  There's no word on how long this new investigation will take.