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Stewart Peppers
Stewart Peppers

Family Needs Our Help: Sign Petition and Demand a Proper Investigation Into Stewart Peppers’ Death

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A Tennessee family in still looking for answers regarding the death of 22-year-old Stewart Peppers.

Peppers, a champion body builder, died on April 29, 2013 after he was arrested and held for three days in the Washington County jail.

Family members, who run the “Justice for Stewart Peppers” Facebook page told Police State Daily that the incident involved an “extreme abuse of power.”

“My grandson was murdered in [the] Washington Co. Detention Center… no foul play… just six men, a restraint chair, some chemical spray, tasers, and 20 minutes of torture while a young man [fought] for his life,” one grandparent said.

Peppers was initially charged with aggravated assault, unlawful possession of a weapon, felony vandalism, simple possession of a schedule VI drug for resale, and simple possession of a schedule III drug when he was booked with a $62,000 bond.

Officials say Peppers was being housed alone, in a single cell, when he became aggressive and started shouting obscenities at jail personnel.

Parents say Peppers endured an initial beating when officers entered his cell. They say officers then strapped him to a restraint chair where they beat him again even though he couldn’t move.

Corrections officers and Washington County Sheriff Ed Graybeal say allegations that Peppers was beaten to death are false. In an answer to a complaint however, which was filed in US District Court, the defendants did admit to using a taser and chemical spray.

A Washington County grand jury decided there was no need for any additional investigation into the incident after an autopsy report declared Peppers’ death “accidental” – the result of a condition called “Excited Delirium,” which they say most likely stemmed from “Nandrolone Decanoate, exogenous testosterone, and acute cannabinoid use.”

As a result, Washington County District Attorney General Tony Clark closed the case.

Excited Delirium Syndrome is a controversial medial diagnosis sometimes associated with the use of physical control measures like police restraint, that can result in death via cardiac or respiratory failure.

Symptoms include a combination of delirium, psychomotor agitation, anxiety, hallucinations, speech disturbances, disorientation, violent and bizarre behavior, insensitivity to pain, elevated body temperature, and increased strength.

Family members filed a federal lawsuit in July of 2014 seeking $21 million in damages on “civil rights violations” and “wrongful death grounds” against Washington County, Sheriff Graybeal, and six County jail corrections officers.

The Peppers’ family attorney says he has eye witness testimony that Peppers was beaten to death in the holding cell.

Family told Police State Daily they are demanding a “proper and thorough investigation into the wrongful death” of their loved one. Please visit change.org and SIGN THE PETITION to help make this happen!

UPDATE: Family members sent Police State Daily pictures from Peppers’ funeral showing injuries consistent with physical assault:

Open casket pictures taken from Stewart Peppers funeral

Pictures taken from Stewart Peppers’ funeral depicting injuries consistent with being hit about the face and skull

  • Liberty Bell

    Thank you so very much for this article

    • PoliceStateDaily

      You are so very welcome. Hopefully we can get some justice for this young man and his family!

  • 5aga

    this is sickening …beyond words

  • SourPuss

    It doesnt matter what you are in jail for – they dont get to KILL you…

  • Charlie Red

    This our faulty correction system. This guy clearly had a mentality issue, and probably suffering from drug withdraw. Instead of counselors and therapists being brought in to help why he was being so aggressive, they brought in a bunch of jack booted thugs to beat compliance and sub,mission into him. They tried to beat respect for authority into him, and it doesn’t work.

    This is a daily occurrence in the “correction” system. There is nothing being done to correct these prisoners, they are being locked up with other criminals and being expected to just work it out.

  • Target4Tyrants

    Man that is so effed up. Scum of the world with badges these days. I feel so bad for his family. This is how the American government create domestic terrorists. The whole family absolutely hates the US government now.

  • Fellow Traveler

    I live in Switzerland. People don’t get beaten to death here in jail. This will keep happening in the USA as long as people continue to tolerate it. The drug war is what leads to most of these abuses.

  • DHS2020

    This is what happens when police forces from across the nation are sent on publicly and privately funded trips to Israel to learn how to become militarized and use tactics that Israel uses on Palestinians. Sad to say but this is the new normal.

  • shitty world-shitty life

    fire every fucking cop in america and replace them with robots. now.

  • Joe Peppers

    Thank You!
    STEWART PEPPERS was beat and tasered to death while being restrained in a restraint chair by Washington County Tennessee Jail staff April 29, 2013. County and government is not telling the truth PLEASE SHOW YOUR SUPPORT, Sign the petition to investigate the wrongful death of Stewart Peppers http://www.change.org/petitions/phil-roe-a-proper-and-thorough-investigation-into-the-wrongful-death-of-stewart-peppers?recruiter=131249430&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=facebook&utm_campaign=share_facebook_mobile Please LIKE their new Facebook pagehttps://www.facebook.com/justiceforstewartpeppers The entire story about Stewart Peppers and info can be found at http://www.uglyjudge.com/victims/tennessee/jonesborough/stewart-peppers/Stewart Peppers, 22, died on April 29, 2013. He was arrested and held for three days in the Washington County jail. His family claims Stewart Peppers was beaten to death by half a dozen corrections officers there and filed a lawsuit as a result. The family’s attorney says the process is taking longer to move forward.The Stewart Peppers’ federal lawsuit was filed in July of last year. They seek $21 million in damages on civil rights violations and wrongful death grounds against Washington County, the sheriff and six Washington County jail corrections officers.The Peppers’ attorney says he has eye witness testimony that Stewart Pepper was beaten to death in a holding cell.More stories and detailshttp://www.uglyjudge.com/victims/tennessee/jonesborough/stewart-peppers/

  • Liberty Bell
    • Liberty Bell

      Please sign the petition in the above link.Thank you.Stewart’s Granny Ma

  • Craig Bergman

    Inexcusable.