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Calls for Reform in Las Vegas Police Department Following Death of Byron Williams

Posted on: July 9th, 2020 by Romanucci & Blandin

50-year-old black man stopped for not having a bicycle light, then handcuffed and restrained with a knee on his back

LAS VEGAS, Nevada (July 9, 2020) — Nationally renowned civil rights attorney Ben Crump and the legal team representing the family of George Floyd are calling for meaningful reform in the Las Vegas Police Department following the death of Byron Williams, a black man who died in police custody after being stopped for a minor offense and eventually handcuffed with an officer’s knee on his back.  

The 50-year-old had been riding a bicycle in the early morning hours without a safety light when officers stopped him. The encounter eventually ended with Williams being handcuffed on the ground with an officer’s knee on his back. Williams repeatedly told the officers, “I can’t breathe.” He died an hour later.  The incident happened nine months ago on Sept. 5, 2019, but has not received widespread attention, in part because of the lack of full video for the public to see. The Las Vegas Police Department has released only partial bodycam footage. 

The two officers who were involved in Williams’ death have not yet been charged.

“We demand immediate accountability and transparency from the Las Vegas Police Department in all of its cases,” said Attorney Ben Crump.  “In the Byron Williams case, this includes the release of the full bodycam video of the incident so the public can fully understand what happened that evening.” 

“We continue to push for the elimination of systemic racism in our nation’s police departments. What happened to Byron Williams should never ever happen, and we need substantive, meaningful police reform now in Las Vegas and around the country,” said Attorney Antonio Romanucci of Romanucci & Blandin, LLC.

“Our family has been forever changed by the senseless and inhumane death of our brother, uncle and son. Byron Williams was an aspiring poet, author, hair and fashion designer. The conduct of the police officers the morning of Sept. 5 was unthinkable, and we will not rest until justice is brought to Byron’s case,” said Tina Lewis-Stevenson, Byron Lewis’ sister.   

ABOUT BEN CRUMP LAW: Nationally renowned civil rights and personal injury attorney Ben Crump has spearheaded a legal movement to better protect the rights of marginalized citizens. He has led landscape-changing civil rights cases and represented clients in a wide range of areas including civil rights, personal injury, labor and employment, class actions, and more. Ben Crump Law is dedicated to holding the powerful accountable. For more, visit BenCrump.com

About Romanucci & Blandin, LLC

Romanucci & Blandin is a national trial practice committed to fighting for victims of negligence, abuse and wrongful death arising from police misconduct, corporate negligence, civil rights actions, medical malpractice, mass torts and class actions. The attorneys’ steadfast commitment to fighting for those seeking justice around the country has helped the firm obtain multiple verdicts and settlements in the millions of dollars. The Chicago-based personal injury lawyers are dedicated to providing victims who suffered injury as a result of another’s wrongdoing full and fair compensation in a diligent, professional, skilled and caring manner. The lawyers actively support their communities and provide advocacy at the national, state and local levels on issues that support the U.S. tort system. Founded in 1998, Romanucci & Blandin is widely recognized for representing plaintiffs in numerous practice areas including: personal injury, wrongful death, medical malpractice, workers’ compensation, pharmaceutical, mass torts, civil rights, police misconduct, excessive force, aviation, product liability and premises liability.  For more information about Romanucci & Blandin, please visit www.rblaw.net or call (312) 458-1000. 

About Pintas & Mullins

Pintas & Mullins is a national law firm, headquartered in Chicago, which has fought for the rights of the seriously injured for more than 35 years.

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