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Authorities release personal files for deputies involved in Sutherland death

Updated: May. 15, 2021 at 10:41 AM EDT
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - In the course of investigating the death of Jamal Sutherland, information has come to light regarding the two deputies involved.

On Thursday, The Charleston County Sheriff’s Office released hours of video footage involving the death of Jamal Sutherland who died at the Al Cannon Detention Center on the morning of Jan. 5, 2021.

Records show that one of the deputies involved in the case was named in a lawsuit a few years ago for using excessive force.

Sutherland’s family has said that he had bipolar schizophrenia.

The two Charleston County deputies involved that morning were Detention Deputy Brian Houle and Detention Sergeant Lindsay Fickett.

Records show Houle has been working at the detention center since 2016 and Fickett started there a decade ago. However in those ten years, she’s received awards and accusations.

Fickett’s personnel records claimed that she “is skilled at securing an incident and gaining control of a stressful event.”

But this lawsuit against several sheriff’s office employees accused Fickett of strangling, assaulting, and using a taser on a female inmate in 2014.

It also says that Fickett’s taser discharge was excessive force, lasting for more than seven seconds, all while the woman was almost completely restrained.

Fickett’s personnel records also show that she was accused by a supervisor of quote, unprofessional, selfish, and unbecoming conduct last year.

We haven’t been able to find any disciplinary action previously taken against Brian Houle, the other deputy seen in the Sutherland videos. He was actually given the sheriff’s office’s detention deputy of the quarter award in 2020. His resume says that he was a rifleman in the Marine Corps years ago.

Fickett and Houle have not been charged with any crimes related to what happened to Sutherland.

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