Feds to investigate handcuffed La. man's shooting death

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Posted: Sep 2, 2014 8:04 PM by Trey Schmaltz
Updated: Sep 2, 2014 8:04 PM
Source: WBRZ

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Topics: Victor White, shooting, police, deputies, Iberia, Trey Schmaltz

NEW IBERIA- A federal investigation will focus on the shooting death of a man who was in the custody of the Iberia Parish Sheriff's Office at the time of his death last spring.

Victor White III, 23, died from what has been described as a self-inflicted gun shot wound. The coroner classified his death as a homicide but his family has been outspoken about what they believe was an investigation gone awry.

Deputies originally said White was able to shoot himself in the back while being handcuffed with a weapon they did not know he had. Later, an autopsy found White was shot in the side of his chest, not his back.

White's family has asked for a further investigation. Tuesday, the United States Attorney for the Western District of Louisiana answered them. reported a federal investigation is ongoing into White's death.

"This tragic incident deserves a full review of the evidence; our objective is to discover the truth," Stephanie Finley stated. "The FBI has been working parallel with the current investigation. Our review will take time to complete. FBI agents, along with attorneys from my office and the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division, will carefully review the results of the current investigation by the Louisiana State Police, will determine what additional investigation, if any, is necessary to determine who fired the fatal shot, and whether the evidence demonstrates a willful civil rights violation. The federal investigation will supplement, rather than supplant, the investigation by state authorities. Once the investigation is complete, we will carefully review the results to decide if any prosecutable violations of federal criminal civil rights statutes occurred."

Investigators have said the gun involved is not the type carried by Iberia deputies.

The story has gained national attention.
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