Until his last moments, Jamal was a man of faith. He was well versed in the teachings and readings of the Bible. He loved Jesus and wanted to change the world with the word of God.
Jamal loved his family, especially his mother, more than anything else. Jamal was close with his brothers, caretaker to his mother, and friends with his father. Family was everything to Jamal.
Jamal had a talent for producing his own music. His music was well-respected around the community and was a pride of his. Jamal taught music to a host of family and friends throughout his life.
Jamal began to suffer from mental health issues during his teenage years, but he did not let this define him. Jamal was aware of his illnesses and knew to seek help at the right time, which is exactly what he did on December 31, 2020.
As evidenced by Jamal's tragic death at the hands of Charleston County Sheriff's Deputies, the criminal justice system is not equipped to have persons with mental health illnesses in their custody. This must change at the local, county, and state levels. Our State Representatives must introduce and pass legislation to allow for better protection and treatment of those persons with mental illnesses.
Excessive force is not a chargeable offense in South Carolina. This must be changed and soon. Our State Representatives must introduce and pass legislation to allow our solicitors to charge law enforcement when they use excessive force.
Justice4Jamal is a non-profit organization whose goal is to change the way those with mental illnesses are treated in their communities, hospitals, and the criminal justice system. We hope to begin fundraising efforts in the near future to provide support for these goals.