JASPER, Ala. (WIAT) — An online petition is calling for the immediate resignation of Walker County Sheriff Nick Smith.
The petition, titled ‘Justice for Anthony Mitchell,’ had garnered hundreds of signatures as of Wednesday night.
Anthony “Tony” Mitchell died while in custody at the Walker County Jail last month. His family filed a wrongful death lawsuit claiming he froze to death after being put inside the jail’s freezer. The lawsuit also claims that the sheriff and other employees tried to cover it up.
Circumstances surrounding Mitchell’s death have many in the community outraged and led to protests outside the Walker County Sheriff’s Office on Tuesday.
Ryan Cagle created the petition. He said he wants to see change.
“Our community deserves elected officials and people who will power that we can trust,” Cagle said. “And I don’t see how anyone in this county with any sense of reason about themselves or rationality could look at this current leadership and at the sheriff’s department and think it’s something we can trust.”
An internal surveillance recording obtained by CBS 42 shows what the family says appears to be their loved one, Mitchell, being carried into the loading area of the Walker County Jail.
The video contradicted an earlier statement from the Walker County Sheriff’s Office claiming Mitchell was “alert and conscious” when he left the jail for transport to a local hospital.
Small groups of protestors have been outside the sheriff’s office periodically since Monday when that video was released.