Family waits for answers in Rockdale County Jail death

- He was 22 years old and had no known health problems, so what caused Shali Tilson to suddenly die while he was inside the Rockdale County Jail? It has been nearly two months and still no answers.

On March 12, the family of Shali Tilson got a call no one wants to get. It was someone from the Rockdale County Sheriff's Office informing them Shali died while in custody. Attorney Mawuli Davis said the family still doesn't know how or why.

"What we know for sure was that he was healthy and there was no reason that his life should have ended in the Rockdale County Jail being held on two misdemeanors," said Davis.

Tilson had been in jail nine days after Conyers Police arrested him on charges of disorderly conduct and obstruction of an officer. His mother, Tynesha Tilson said she was not permitted to see her son while he was in jail because he was on restriction.

"My son wasn't a criminal. He was a good kid. He was held for 10 days on two misdemeanor charges and ended up dead. And we want to know why and what happened and who is responsible," said Tilson.

Rockdale County's sheriff asked the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to come in and handle the investigation. FOX 5 News has also learned the sheriff immediately contacted the Rockdale County NAACP following Tilson's death

"I don't want anyone to think the sheriff was trying to hide anything. It's so easy to beat up the justice system but in this case right here, I can only say the sheriff contacted NAACP," said Davis.

The GBI said they've completed the autopsy and are waiting on additional scientific test to come back before the medical examiner can determine the cause of death. Attorney Davis said he and the family plan to meet with GBI on May 14 for an update. Davis' law firm also has an investigator who is interviewing witnesses.

"If there was anyone who was at the jail when this tragedy occurred we're asking them to call us," said Davis.

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