Over the weekend, we learned that rapper, songwriter, and actor DMX, who has had a long-time struggle with drug addiction and the mental health issues it caused him, suffered a heart attack due to a drug overdose. DMX is currently off of life support with little brain activity and breathing on his own, however the prognosis from his doctors is not looking good. Our prayers go out to DMX and his family as he continues to fight for his life and his road to recovery.

What You Need To Know:

As an investigation by the Texas Rangers continues, seven detention officers who were involved in the death of 26-year-old Marvin D. Scott III have been fired, and an eighth officer has resigned. The Scott family is now calling for the detention officers to be arrested. As reported in March 18’s What You Need To Know newsletter, Scott died on March 14 while in custody at the Collin County Detention Facility in McKinney, TX after being arrested and transported to the center by the Allen Police Department earlier in the day.

“Evidence I have seen confirms that these detention officers violated well-established Sheriff’s Office policies and procedures. Everyone in Collin County deserves safe and fair treatment, including those in custody at our jail. I will not tolerate less,” Collin County Sheriff Jim Skinner said in a statement.

Scott, who was diagnosed with schizophrenia two years ago, was arrested at an outlet mall where officers responded to a disturbance call. At the time, Scott was using marijuana instead of taking his medication. Scott was taken to Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital-Allen for “acting in an erratic manner… due to the possible ingestion of drugs,” according to a statement from the Allen Police Department. Scott was processed at the Allen Police Headquarters holding facility and transferred to the Collin County Sheriff’s Office, where he began acting strangely. Detention officers then restrained Scott to a bed, pepper sprayed him, then attached a spit mask to his face. Scott became unresponsive and was taken back to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.

An independent autopsy ordered by the family determined Scott’s death was caused by restraint and asphyxiation.

Why We Need To Know: 
Police reform training should also include those who transport, guard and supervise inmates and anyone taken into custody. A face mask is used to prevent inhaling pepper spray, not to hold it in a person’s airways. Common sense says this was a disaster in the making. Does this also need to be measured and considered before hiring officers? Thankfully, law enforcement is correcting its wrongs this time. Next time, we hope this doesn’t happen at all.