Colbert County investigating wrongful death of fleeing passenger

A 47-year-old Mississippi man died suddenly in Tuscumbia on Monday night, after a brief police chase involving a truck in which he was a passenger. The Alabama Bureau of Investigation is now investigating to determine whether it was a wrongful death.

According to police reports, on the night of March 7, Colbert County sheriff's deputies were trying to make a routine traffic stop just west of the town of Cherokee. They were attempting to pull a truck over for improper lane usage, but the truck would not immediately stop. The deputies followed the truck, which eventually came to a stop, and two men jumped out and ran.

The Mississippi man, who had been a passenger in the truck, ran about 150 yards before he suddenly collapsed. He was unresponsive when the deputies reached him.

The officers called for assistance, but emergency medical personnel were unable to revive him. The Colbert County coroner also came to the scene and pronounced the man dead at the scene. He was transported yesterday to the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences in Huntsville for an autopsy.

The ABI is now conducting a formal investigation into the man's death, as is customary in cases where someone dies in police custody or during an active police pursuit. The investigation will attempt to ascertain whether any negligence on the part of the sheriff's deputies or anyone else in the scene contributed to the man's death.

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