Syracuse (WSYR-TV) -- No charges will be filed in the death of an inmate at a local jail two years ago, but Raul Pinet, Jr.’s family isn’t giving up hope. They think someone should be held responsible. His family is now calling for an independent investigation.
Raul’s wife Tashara Pinet says she’s completely devastated.
“It’s kind of like your heart being ripped out of your chest,” she said.
Pinet’s father, Raul Pinet, Sr., wants justice.
“A human being got killed. What happened with my son? They didn’t do anything with him. We need some justice,” he said.
An elderly father, a wife turned widow and a young child are all left with painful memories of Pinet’s death at the Onondaga County Justice Center. And now, two years later, the family is facing another emotional blow.
“The new decision for the grand jury not to indict these officers re-victimized this family,” said attorney Jose Perez.
The decision states that no criminal charges will be filed in Pinet’s death -- a death that was ruled a homicide by the State Commission of Corrections earlier this year. Their findings showed Pinet was fatally restrained while in custody. However, a grand jury says officers performed within the scope of their duties, so they were cleared of any wrongdoing.
“He was lying on the ground, motionless for more than seven minutes and they were watching him there and they did nothing that’s not reasonable,” Perez continued.
“With that decision, it kind of seems like hope wants to be gone and like the door was closed in our face, but I want to tell you even though that door closed, another one will open,” Tashara said.
So now, the Pinet family is beginning what they call a journey for justice. A journey they say will spur change and reveal the truth behind the death of a son, father and loving husband.
“We are never going to stop fighting, never, until we see justice,” said Tashara.
The family is waiting on a report from the grand jury, in which they recommend changes in how situations like these should be handled.
By law, that report will remained sealed until its reviewed by County Judge Joseph Fahey.