Ta’Neasha Chappell Dies In Police Custody, Family Demands Answers
By Annalise Edwards
The family of Ta’Neasha Chappell is seeking answers and justice after she died in police custody. According to a report by WDRB, the 23-year-old Louisville native had been held in an Indiana jail since May and died Friday (July 16) shortly after being transferred to Schneck Memorial Hospital.
Details about what happened have not been released by police as the Indiana State Police are currently conducting an investigation.
“It’s unsettling, we want justice, we want answers –– we have a lot of questions and no answers,” Ta’Neasha’s sister, Ronesha Murrell told the outlet. “My mom hasn’t even been able to verify the body,” Murrell added. “Why has she not been able to verify the body? They won’t give us any answers”
Police booked Chappell into jail on May 26 on shoplifting and other charges, according to reports. Her parents, Lavita McCain and Donte Chappell are devastated losing their daughter and have speculations about what happened to Ta’Neasha. A day before she died, Chappell’s family spoke to her and said she was in good health, though they said she was having issues with some of the other people in the jail.
“I think there is some foul play involved in it because she was the only Black girl in that jail,” Donte Chappell said. “She called numerous times –– over and over saying that ‘they are going to kill me. Get me out of here,” McCain said.
“My baby died in jail … in jail. I feel like I failed her because I didn’t have the money to get her out,” Ta’Neasha’s mother said. The 23-year-old was being held on a $4,007 bond.
Murrell explained to the outlet that Te’Neasha was beloved by family, community, and her 10-year-old daughter. “So many people in Louisville knew who she was,” Murrell said. “She was just so much life.”
Funeral arrangements have not been made yet. Investigators are awaiting an autopsy report which police say was conducted on Sunday (July 18).
To support the family’s GoFundMe to cover burial expenses, click here.
Reading about Black trauma can have an impact on your mental health. If you or someone you know need immediate mental health help, text “STRENGTH” to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 to be connected to a certified crisis counselor. These additional resources are also available:
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255
The National Alliance on Mental Illness 1-800-950-6264
The Association of Black Psychologists 1-301-449-3082
The Anxiety and Depression Association of America 1-240-485-1001
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