Family goes before commission for answers in stun gun death of relative

AUGUSTA, GA (WFXG) - An Augusta family appeared in front commission Tuesday, pleading that action be taken in what they say was the wrongful death of their loved one.

"They have swept it up under the rug and they are ignoring our family," Alvera Harvey said, after speaking with commissioners.

She along with other relatives protested outside the courthouse last week, but now they want commissioners to step in.

"We think that the people responsible should be held accountable for it," Harvey said. "That's all that it is at the end of the day."

The family says a deputy used a stun gun against their family member George Harvey, firing it five times last June. Harvey then went into cardiac arrest and died.

"We were victims in this too because we lost someone that we loved and cared about dearly," Alvera said.

They argued before commissioners that despite multiple attempts to get answers from both the Richmond County Sheriff's Office and the District Attorney's Office, they haven't heard anything. In fact, they feel his race may play a part in the delay.

"Our family has never made this a racial issue, but it seems that everything is going back to him being a black man that had a criminal record, that was high at the time and it's as though no one wants to seem to want to do anything," Harvey said.

While there wasn't much the commissioners could do, Commissioner Mason led a charge to obtain a copy of the sheriff's office tasing policy and promised to continue the conversation in public safety committee meetings.

"We have some type of semblance that someone is listening to us, which is the main thing that we were trying to accomplish; get someone to listen to our side of the story," Harvey said.

The family said their next steps include suing the city of Augusta and protesting outside the Richmond County Sheriff's Office.

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