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A Woman Died While in Custody of Hancock County Sheriff's Department - The Family Demands Answers

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Brianna Grier's father, Marvin Grier, speaks at a press conference in Atlanta on July 29.

The family of a Black woman from middle Georgia are demanding answers after she died while in custody of the Hancock County Sheriff’s Department.

According to the GBI, deputies put Brianna Grier in the back of a patrol car, but she was not wearing a seatbelt, her hands were cuffed in front of her, and the rear passenger-side door was never closed.

"[The Sheriff's Department] allege[s] that this Black Woman who is not very heavy manages to get out the back of a police car with handcuffs on," said the family's attorney, Ben Crump, at a Friday press conference in Atlanta.
Grier was seriously injured falling out of the moving car on July 15th and died on July 21 at an Atlanta hospital.

Martin Matheny was promoted to Program Director and Content Strategist on July 1, 2022. He has served as the Executive Producer of our local news program 'Athens News Matters', and he covers local government for WUGA News. He started at WUGA in 2012 as a part-time classical music host and still hosts WUGA's longest-running local program 'Night Music' which is heard on Tuesdays and Wednesdays on WUGA at 10pm. 'Night Music' can also be heard statewide on the GPB Classical stream Mondays and Tuesdays at 8pm. As part of 'Athens News Matters' Martin works with student interns to help cultivate the next generation of Public Media rock stars! In his spare time Martin is an amateur book binder and freelance musician who frequently performs with Big Band Athens playing bass trombone. He lives in Normaltown with his wife, Shaye and dog, Murphy.