WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – A peaceful protest for Shaheen Mackey started at the Luzerne County Prison Sunday, where his family says correctional officers’ use of force led to his death.
“We’re not going to stop until we receive justice. Justice for Shaheen Mackey,” said Tatiyanee Mackey, Shaheen’s daughter.
The 41-year-old Luzerne County man died after being restrained while in custody at the Luzerne County prison in 2018. That’s where Sunday night’s march began, led by Mackey’s loved ones.
Dozens joined their march from the prison to the courthouse, many carrying signs that read Justice for Mackey.
Mackey was in prison for about five hours before he was rushed to the hospital where he died two days later. His family says he suffered seizures and claim prison officials did not properly document his medical condition and instead used physical force to restrain him.
The district attorney determined there was no criminal wrongdoing on the part of those correctional officers. However, Luzerne County officials recently agreed to a $3 million settlement with Mackey’s estate. But Shaneequah Zigler with Black Lives Matter Wilkes-Barre says, it’s not the money they’re after. It’s accountability.
“Those people held responsible for murdering him. That’s what we want, justice. We want them to be out of a job, we want them to be given the same treatment we would get if we were to murder somebody, that’s justice to me,” Zigler said.
Zigler says this incident shows that systematic injustice is not just a problem for another, larger city. It can happen at home.
“We’re here to show people, it happens here and we need to fix it. We’re not done, it just started,” Zigler said.
Mackey’s daughter tells Eyewitness News she wants to see change.
“Reform, definitely starting with the prison. Justice, of course,” Tatiyanee Mackey said.
Earlier this week, a relative of Mackey posted a 23-minute video on Facebook of the incident in the prison involving Mackey. We’re told the full video is more than an hour long. We have made repeated requests to obtain and view the full video, but so far we have not received it.