Charleston activist groups, including the ACLU of South Carolina, Brothers and Sisters Improving Communities (BASIC), Charleston Immigrant Coalition, Black Liberation Fund, Charleston Activist Network, Charleston BLM, Black Voters Matter, and Lowcountry Action Committee, have issued the following demands following the death of Jamal Sutherland at the Al Cannon Detention Center
- Police Accountability - We demand the officers involved in Jamal Sutherland’s killing be fired, arrested, and charged. We also demand an independent (non-internal) investigation and after-action review of the facilities and agencies involved in the Jamal Sutherland case, including the Palmetto Lowcountry Behavioral Health Center, the Al Cannon Detention Center, and the North Charleston Police Department. In addition, we demand all records of correctional officer misconduct, the resulting complaints, and disciplinary actions are made available to the public immediately.
- Divest from Carceral System & Invest in Public Health - We demand Charleston County Sheriff's Office, North Charleston Police Department, and Charleston Police Department each reallocate a portion of their respective budgets for the creation of a Community Safety and Violence Prevention Department dedicated to responding and supporting residents—including incarcerated persons—during mental health-related incidents. This department should be completely independent of the Mayor’s Office, the Sheriff’s Office, and Al Cannon Detention Center. In addition, we demand personnel assigned to this department be mental health professionals and not law enforcement officers.
- Community Control - We demand the establishment and funding of a Public Safety Accountability Council, which consists of county residents, including community members impacted by law enforcement; independent of the Mayor and Sheriff’s Office; not consisting of current or former law enforcement officers; that has the authority to subpoena and review data, inspect detention facilities, make recommendations on enforcement and jail policies, practices, and responses to incidents; and the ability to discipline and fire police and correctional officers in Charleston County for violations.