Georgia man LaShawn Thompson was 'eaten alive' by insects: family


April 14, 2023

April 14, 2023, 11:59 a.m. ET

The heartbroken family of a Georgia inmate called Friday for a criminal investigation into his death behind bars last fall, claiming he was “eaten alive” by insects in his filthy cell.

LaShawn Thompson, 35, was found unresponsive in his cell in the psychiatric wing of the Fulton County Jail on September 13th.

Michael D. Harper, an attorney for Thompson's family, wrote in a statement shared with The Post on Friday that Thompson has been in custody since his arrest on simple assault charges in June.

“Three months later, Mr. Thompson was found dead in a filthy prison cell after being eaten alive by insects and bed bugs,” Harper said.

“When his body was found, one of the detention officers refused to perform CPR because, as she put it, she was “going crazy.” The prison cell in which Mr. Thompson was housed was not suitable for a sick animal. He doesn’t deserve this.”

Disturbing photos accompanying Harper's testimony show Thompson's cell covered in dirt and littered with debris.

An image also shows Thompson's bony body with defibrillator pads on his chest, which is covered in what appear to be small insect bites.

LaShawn Thompson died on September 13, 2022. Harper Law Firm

Harper also sent The Post a copy of the Fulton County coroner's report, which listed Thompson's cause of death as undetermined but noted a “severe bed bug infestation” in his cell.

Harper told USA Today this week that Thompson's relatives are “calling for a criminal investigation into the matter and (major) changes at the prison.”

Members of Thompson's family gathered outside the Fulton County Courthouse on Thursday to demand justice.

Photos from Thompson's cell show the disgustingly dirty conditions. Harper Law Firm

Thompson's family is demanding justice for their loved one. Harper Law Firm

“It was heartbreaking because no one should be seen like that. Nobody should see that,” Thompson’s brother, Brandon McCrae, told WSBTV about the photos of his late brother’s living conditions.

In a written statement to Channel 2 Action News, the Fulton County Sheriff's Office said it has launched a “comprehensive investigation” into Thompson's death.

After the incident, the department immediately allocated an additional $500,000 to combat “bed bugs, lice and other vermin” at the prison and updated sanitation protocols, police said.

Thompson's body was ravaged by what appeared to be small insect bites. Harper Law Firm

“The ongoing investigation is examining details of the medical care and will ultimately determine whether criminal charges are warranted in this case,” the statement said.

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