Protesters call for federal investigation into deadly shooting of Jackson man by Capitol Police officers

Family members say the agency has yet to provide information about the shooting, which took place nearly five months ago
Published: Jan. 20, 2023 at 6:25 PM CST
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Family members and a Jackson pastor are pushing for a federal investigation into the killing of a Jackson man by Capitol Police, an incident that happened nearly five months ago.

Even now, little has been released to the public about the circumstances surrounding 25-year-old Jaylen Lewis’ death, except that the officers involved have been placed on administrative leave and the case remains under investigation by the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation.

Two dozen protesters walked up and down the sidewalk in front of the State Capitol, saying they demand answers and want justice for Lewis.

“This mother in this community, her initial question was, ‘What happened?’ That’s it,” said Jackson Pastor Dwayne Pickett.

Arkela Lewis told reporters that she’s heard virtually nothing from the Department of Public Safety or Capitol Police.

“I don’t make this a career. This is not my -- I don’t bury children yearly. So I don’t know how any of this is supposed to go or how this goes,” Arkela Lewis said. “But I know that somebody should at least try to contact us and say something and give us something and no one has done that yet.”

Lewis said she hasn’t even been able to get a police report of her son’s last moments.

3 On Your Side took her concerns to DPS Commissioner Sean Tindell.

“I’m not aware of that [situation]. And certainly, if that’s what they want, we want to accommodate that,” Tindell said.

Tindell said DPS generally has victim’s assistance coordinators with the state’s bureau of investigation reach out to family members when officer-involved shootings happen.

“If they have any questions, they’re provided a number to call and so I’m gonna verify that that’s been done in this case,” Tindell said.

Arkela Lewis said that number hasn’t helped, either.

“I can’t even get in touch with anyone. No one answers the phone,” she said.

As we first reported earlier this week, Capitol Police have had four incidents where its officers opened fire in the last five months, which appears to be more than any other agency in Mississippi last year.

“We’ve made a request for federal investigation of this case and other cases, to say, you know, what’s happening, and we made the request, they’ve gotten all the information, and they’re gonna let us know what happens,” Pickett said.

During Friday’s protest, a DPS chopper could be seen circling in the sky. The agency also deployed a drone to watch what was happening.

Some protesters told us it appeared that the agency was trying to intimidate them.

DPS spokesperson Bailey Martin said they’ve deployed a helicopter and drone during protests at the Capitol before, especially when the Legislature is in session as a precaution.

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