Joliet, IL Police Sargent Punished For Blowing Whistle About The Suffocation of Eric Lurry by Police.
Hat Tip To Roderick2012 for the news story.
In May 2020, Scottie published a post titled “Rather Good Question.” “Why do cops come out in full force to protect their worst?”
The answer to that question is layered, and based on what has happened to Joliet, IL police Sgt. Javier Esqueda, we can see that one reason cops don’t blow the whistle on cops is because of retribution.
Chicago CBSlocal reports:
“Joliet police Sgt. Javier Esqueda blew the whistle on the death of Eric Lurry in police custody, and now he has been stripped of his police powers and placed on administrative leave.”
Eric Lurry died in January 2020 while in the back of a police car at the police station. After 5 months, Sgt. Esqueda blew the whistle about the video and after 27 years of service, has now been stripped of his badge, gun, and police car.
There’s much to this story, including allegations of tampering with the video. The audio cuts out just after the handcuffed Eric Lurry is slapped. Sgt. Doug May grabs Eric around his throat and holds his nostrils close for 1 minute, 38 seconds.
“Esqueda says Lurry appears to be passing out with a piece of a torn plastic baggie lodged in the back of his mouth. Instead of calling for an ambulance immediately, Sgt. Doug May, hold [sic] his nose.”
Police say that Eric Lurry placed drugs in his mouth. The coroner ruled Eric’s cause of death as a drug overdose.
Esqueda was placed on administrative leave and is now under a criminal and an internal investigation, accused of unauthorized access to video evidence.
Sgt. May, who is seen in the video slapping and holding Eric’s nostrils together, was also placed on administrative leave pending the results of an internal investigation.
Dave Savini is the investigativer reporter working the story. He can be followed at @davesavinicbs2
The following video includes an interview of Esqueda and portions of the video from the police car when Eric Lurry’s ability to breath was impeded.