After an outcry from her family and their attorney, the death of Tamla Horsford, a Georgia mother of five that died mysteriously at a 2018 sleepover, is being investigated again.
You may remember this case due to its suspicious nature. Horsford was the only black woman at an adult sleepover with seven white women and three white men and she mysteriously died during what was supposed to be a night of fun. The initial investigation ruled her death an accident after she fell from the balcony of the house where the sleepover was. She was 40-years-old.
Forsyth County, Georgia Sheriff Ron Freeman has now requested a new investigation due to speculation that her death may have been a homicide.
“I am officially requesting the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to assume and open the investigation into the tragic death of Tamla Horsford,” Freeman wrote in a letter to Georgia Bureau of Investigation Director Vic Reynolds. “Renewed requests for reexamination are best served by an independent law enforcement agency to review previous findings and to search and act on any new evidence which may come to light.”
The Horsford family’s attorney Ralph Fernandez said in a letter to Horsford’s widower that the investigation into her death was done unethically and that there’s a strong possibility that she was murdered. His letter brought her death back into the spotlight last week.
“Witness statements are in conflict,” Fernandez wrote. “A potential subject handled the body as well as the evidence prior to law enforcement arriving. Evidence was disposed of and no inquiry followed. The scene was not preserved. A remarkable fact is that there were no photographs taken during the autopsy of Tamla’s body. This had to have been done at someone’s directive because such a practice is unheard of…We recognize that transparency is vital for law enforcement agencies and we want to ensure that no stone has been left unturned in the investigation of this tragic death.”
He also included his theory of how Horsford fell to her death.
“It appears Tamla was involved in a struggle,” he continued. “There were abrasions noted consistent with that scenario. There were parallel scratches to one arm.”
Fernandez also stated that he has found that “80% of cases where African Americans die under mysterious circumstances, end up closed or cold because there are no videos and the only witnesses are bad guys, or good guys that deep down are really bad.”
“Then you have cases where law enforcement does a poor job and cares little to investigate thoroughly because of some connection or association to the perpetrators. Take the Ahmaud Arbery slaying recently. Without the video surfacing in the media there would never have been an arrest in that cozy relationship between the perpetrators, prosecutors and the investigators.”
Take a look at his letter below.