November death of Clayton County inmate ruled homicide, medical examiner releases video, cause of death

The Clayton County Medical Examiner's Office has officially ruled the Nov. 27 death of a Clayton County inmate a homicide. The Sheriff's office released a graphic video of the struggle that led to his death in the Clayton County Jail. Viewer discretion is advised.

About 10 minutes into the provided video, 38-year-old inmate Terry Lee Thurmond appeared to be hanging over the edge of a second floor railing that night in November. According to the medical examiner's full timeline describing what is happening in the video, Thurman may have been trying to force his fall.

Several inmates appeared to hold onto his leg to keep him from plummeting while another inmates calls for help.

For about 15 minutes, officers and inmates appeared to struggle to hold Thurmond up. At some point, the inmate appeared to be tased, then pulled back over the railing and forced to the ground where several officers placed their knees and body weight on different parts of his body.

The medical examiner's office noticed that the last time Thurmond was seen moving was about a minute later. They said he barely raised his head up before his face lowered back down to the floor. Still, officers remained on his back, neck and shoulder area for almost ten minutes after.

The medical examiner's office said Thurmond's limbs appeared to be lifeless at this point. A nurse began CPR on him three minutes later, which lasted for 12 minutes and 15 seconds before the Clayton County Fire crew arrived. Thurmond was not taken to a hospital until 15 minutes later.

Image 1 of 4

Thurmond appears to begin hanging over the 2nd floor railing. (Credit: Clayton County Medical Examiner's Office)

The medical examiner's office determined that Thurmond suffered cardiac arrest and ruled his death a homicide.

All employees directly involved in the incident were fired on Dec. 19, according to Clayton County Chief Deputy Levon Allen.

The sheriff's office has not yet confirmed whether each of those employees would face criminal charges.