The video, released in August 2020, showed detention officers and a nurse around Neville. The officers held him and put a spit mask over his face while Neville yelled for his mother and said, “I can’t breathe” for the first time. Officers took him to another cell, placed him face down on a mattress, and laid him on top of him to remove his handcuffs.
Over a period of three minutes, Neville said “I can’t breathe” at least 28 times. He was later taken to Wake Forest Baptist, where he died.
Forsyth County’s Sheriff Bobby Kimbrough did not publicly announce Neville’s death for six months until the Winston-Salem Journal asked him about it.
The sheriff’s office released a statement on the case on Wednesday.
“Even before the death of John Neville was known, Sheriff Kimbrough had a dialogue with the Neville children and offered them support,” the statement said. “We complied with your requests and decisions as we were legally possible.”
On July 8, 2020, District Attorney Jim O’Neill of Forsyth County announced that five detention officers and one nurse would be charged with negligent homicide – Lt. Lavette Maria Williams, 48; Cpl. Edward Joseph Roussel, 51; Officer Christopher Bryan Stamper, 42; Officer Antonio Maurice Woodley Jr., 26; Officer Sarah Elizabeth Poole, 36; and Michelle Heughins, 45, a nurse for Wellpath, a Nashville, Tennessee-based medical care company that was in jail.