JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – Civil rights attorney Ben Crump will represent a Jackson woman who said her son died after being hit by a Jackson police officer.
Crump said 37-year-old Dexter Wade left his mother’s house on March 5, 2023, and did not return home. His mother, Bettersten Wade, said she reported him missing on March 14 and did not know that he was deceased until August 24.
Wade said her son’s body had been discharged by the morgue and was buried in a pauper’s field.
According to Crump, an investigator from the coroner’s office identified Dexter using fingerprints and reportedly turned it over to Jackson police to do the proper death notification on March 9. However, Wade said she did not receive any answers from authorities until August.
“Dexter’s story is a living nightmare for any mother. The secrecy surrounding his death, the alleged concealment of vital information, and the callous burial in a pauper’s field without his mother’s knowledge are not just oversights – they are a grave miscarriage of justice. The fact that Dexter’s tragic end involved an off-duty police officer only deepens the wounds of this community and raises troubling questions about the integrity of those entrusted with upholding the law,” said Crump.
Jackson Mayor Chokwe A. Lumumba addressed the incident during the State of the City address.
“I know attorney Ben Crump well, you know, and so I don’t have any reaction. And I still stand by the position that it was a very tragic and unfortunate circumstance and that we should be in prayer for that family. To lose a child is is is a devastating thing, but at the end of the day, it was an accident, and we need to make certain of that. And the failure was a communications failure. I don’t see any malice or any police misconduct. I see a department that can improve how it communicates between division so that the accident investigation division knows what the missing persons division knows. And they all know what the coroner knows. That’s what we can look for,” said Lumumba.