An investigation into Tamla Horsford’s death is being reopened after significant public outcry and a request from her family’s lawyer.
According to MadamNoire, Horsford, a mother of five, attended an adult sleepover with seven white women and three white men in 2018 and mysteriously died. The initial investigation ruled Horsford’s death an accident after she fell from a balcony in the house the group was staying at.
Forsyth County, Georgia, Sheriff Ron Freeman requested a new investigation Friday, after mounting pressure from the Horsford family attorney and rappers Curtis ’50 Cent’ Jackson and Clifford T.I. Harris Jr.
“I am officially requesting the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to assume and open the investigation into the tragic death of Tamla Horsford,” Freeman wrote in a letter to Georgia Bureau of Investigation Director Vic Reynolds. “Renewed requests for reexamination are best served by an independent law enforcement agency to review previous findings and to search and act on any new evidence which may come to light.”
Attorney Ralph Fernandez, who has been retained by Horsford’s family said in a letter to Horsford’s widower, the investigation into her death left a significant amount of holes and there’s a strong chance she was murdered.
“Witness statements are in conflict. A potential subject handled the body as well as the evidence prior to law enforcement arriving. Evidence was disposed of and no inquiry followed. The scene was not preserved,” Fernandez wrote. “A remarkable fact is that there were no photographs taken during the autopsy of Tamla’s body. This had to have been done at someone’s directive because such a practice is unheard of…We recognize that transparency is vital for law enforcement agencies and we want to ensure that no stone has been left unturned in the investigation of this tragic death.”
Fernandez believes Horsford was murdered when she fell to her death.
“It appears Tamla was involved in a struggle,” he continued. “There were abrasions noted consistent with that scenario. There were parallel scratches to one arm.”
Fernandez added in the letter “80% of cases where African Americans die under mysterious circumstances, end up closed or cold because there are no videos and the only witnesses are bad guys, or good guys that deep down are really bad.”
“Then you have cases where law enforcement does a poor job and cares little to investigate thoroughly because of some connection or association to the perpetrators. Take the Ahmaud Arbery slaying recently. Without the video surfacing in the media there would never have been an arrest in that cozy relationship between the perpetrators, prosecutors, and the investigators.”
The situation puts another spotlight on Georgia law enforcement after an Atlanta police officer shot Rayshard Brooks twice in the back Friday night outside of a Wendy’s. The Georgia incidents come while African Americans are still grieving after the death of George Floyd.