MIAMI - A local organization held a silent march and vigil Saturday in honor of those affected by what they describe as the violent culture permeating the Broward Sheriff's Office.
The Decarcerate Broward Coalition, a community organizing collective spearheaded by Chainless Change Inc., announced the event from 4 p.m. until 8 p.m. at the Highlands Community Center, 511 NE 44th St. in Pompano Beach.
They said, a 43-year-old Broward resident, was "killed during a mental health episode at the North Broward Bureau — a detention center that specializes in housing individuals with special needs."
"BSO's own reports say corrections staff punched Desir nine times, choked, tased, and pepper-sprayed him while he was handcuffed. The injuries Desir sustained during the altercation resulted in permanent severe brain damage that led to his death," organizers said.
"Far too many people in this country deal with mental illness, and when something like this happens to them, excuses are made," said Kevin's brother Moses Desir.
Organizers said, "For over a year, the Desir family has been seeking the public release of Kevin's autopsy report and all videos related to his death. As of February 2022, BSO concluded in an internal report that the incident constituted, 'an appropriate use of force.'"
"The vigil and march aim to ensure that Kevin's death is not forgotten by those in positions to enact true systemic change."
Speakers at the event, included members of the Desir family and their lawyer, Jeremy McLymont, and members of the Decarcerate Broward Coalition, and formerly incarcerated individuals.
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