Law enforcement in Alabama has released surveillance footage of Christina Nance, the Black woman found dead inside a Huntsville Police Department van, to her family, who still isn’t satisfied that they know enough, or anything, really, about how their loved one died. The video shows the 29-year-old crawling into the van where her body was discovered nearly two weeks later.
According to CBS News, Huntsville Police Deputy Chief Dewayne McCarver said Nance’s appearance in the video began on September 25, when she is first seen lying in the bushes and then sitting on the hood of a patrol car. Later, Nance is reportedly seen crawling into the van, which has doors that don’t open from the inside. McCarver said Nance can be seen opening the windows of the van and that her movement in the vehicle can be seen on camera through September 28, which makes the fact that her body wasn’t discovered inside until October 7, all the more bewildering and disturbing.
“The Huntsville Police Department’s thoughts are with the family during this tragedy,” McMurray said in a statement. “Investigators met with the family Friday morning and showed them the security video of the events leading up to Ms. Nance’s death. We will continue to work with them through this difficult time.”
But the family members, having viewed the video, say they still have more questions than answers.
“I was thinking everything was going to be clear, there was going to be some type of clear indication of my sister being you know…of how she died but there wasn’t,” Nance’s sister, Latausha Nance, told WHNT 19. “Not any like at all, everything was blurry. I don’t know if that was my sister.”
Both the police department and the state medical examiner have already said there are no signs of foul play in Nance’s death, and the medical examiner said the cause of death will be announced after further testing, including a toxicology report, has been completed.
The family understandably plans to have a private autopsy conducted.
In a case that is naturally giving Black people major Freddie Gray vibes, it just seems like being vague and less than transparent with the revealing of information just isn’t the move, which is likely why Nance’s family is growing impatient.
The family now has famed civil attorney Ben Crump on their side. In a statement, Crump pledged that “we will get to the truth of what happened to Christina Nance.”
As for the van itself: “The van was purchased in 1995 and was used to transport inmates. A spokesperson for HPD says when the Madison County Sheriff’s Office took over all detention services in the early 2000s the van was repurposed. The van was last used in March 2021, to transport evidence approved for destruction from cleared cases,” News 19 reported.