Family of Jefferson County inmate who died while in custody speaks out

Local News

PINE BLUFF, Ar. — The Arkansas Medical Examiner’s Office has released preliminary autopsy results in the death investigation of a Jefferson County Inmate.

18-year-old Dezmen McBride died about 2 months ago and now there are even more questions surrounding the case from his family.

The McBride family said they are still mourning the loss of Dezmen, but now they’re taken away by the latest update.

“I can’t sleep, all I do is cry, I’m having headaches because I want answers,” mother, Deborah McBride said. 

Her and the rest of the family react after the Medical examiner’s office released an update, saying the cause and manner of his death is “undetermined”.

The status of “undetermined” means that after a thorough investigation the findings do not give any conclusive facts to account for the cause or manner of death. The final, official autopsy report has not been sent yet.

“It’s unacceptable, and I’m asking for closure,” McBride said. “This is a wound that needs to be healed.”

McBride was arrested on May 21st for a terroristic act.

According to the Jefferson County Sheriffs Office, on June 5th staff at W.C. “DUB” Brassell Detention Center noticed McBride wasn’t feeling well and called for an ambulance.

He was transported to the Jefferson Regional Medical Centers, where he later died.

“I called every day and this is what we waited on, to hear it’s undetermined,” sister, Tamara McBride said.

What happened exactly is still unclear. His family tells us what they believe. 

“Y’all should’ve knew that something was wrong with but nah, they didn’t,” Brother, Marquise Carter said. “They prolonged him, say him in the cell and the next morning let him stay there until that evening then took him to the hospital.”

“You could him in his casket, he was beaten up, the makeup couldn’t even cover it up,” sister, Tamara McBride said. 

In a statement, Sheriff Lafayette Woods Jr. said the preliminary results are disappointing because “we all” want answers.

Meanwhile, the family said McBride’s life mattered and they want more details.
“All we want justice, it shouldn’t be that hard,” Carter said. 

“He still was human,” Deborah McBride said. “He didn’t deserve to go that way. 

Jefferson County Sheriffs Office said so far the investigation has not revealed any criminal or administrative wrongdoing.

The investigation is ongoing. The family said they will continue to push for clear answers.
Click here to read the full statement: (

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