MACOMB COUNTY, Mich. - The Justice Department is releasing hundreds of documents for the first time in the death of an inmate inside the Macomb County Jail.
David Stojcevski's death sparked a national debate on the treatment of inmates after the Local 4 Defenders aired video of his final days, which included agonizing suffering due to withdrawal from doctor-prescribed medications.
Now, more than three years later, his family is getting some answers and raising new questions.
It was classified information until now, as information comes out about what the FBI discovered while investigating Stojcevski's death.
"He didn't need to die," said Stephanie Stojcevski, David Stojcevski's mother. "There was no reason for it. No, the hospital is five minutes away. ... My David died on the floor, and he lost 50 pounds, and I'll never have my David back."
Stephanie Stojcevski said she cries for the loss of her son and fights for justice in his death.
Video showed David Stojcevski shaking, naked on a jail floor, twitching and seizing for days until he died.
He was in jail for failure to pay $700 in fines. He died as guards watched on camera.
"They watched my son die for 13-14 days," Stephanie Stojcevski said. "I don't know why they don't respond. Do they have a heart? How do they sleep at night? Do they have kids?"
The FBI found that David Stojcevski had no food his last five days of life. He lay on the jail floor twitching for his last 48 hours without any visits from the jail medical staff.
Multiple guards said they were worried and asked the medical staff to help David Stojcevski, but were repeatedly told he was fine and that it was normal for a person detoxing from opioid addiction.
One guard said he wasn't told specifically by medical staff members that David Stojcevski was faking, but that was the impression he got from them.
"That guard is wrong," Stephanie Stojcevski said. "They are supposed to call emergency. They are supposed to take them to the hospital. Everyone who was there -- shame on them."
Another guard detailed how he and his partner watched David Stojcevski in his final moments, his stomach moving up and down until it stopped.
After the Local 4 Defenders aired the video, the county called a press conference, saying jail staff members deserved medals for trying to save David Stojcevski's life.
The FBI investigation doesn't reveal what, if anything, the medical staff said about their role in the death. The Justice Department ruled that the inaction by staff members didn't amount to criminal activity.
David Stojcevski's parents said that still doesn't make it right.
"Every day is harder and harder, and I am going to fight to the end for justice," Stephanie Stojcevski said.
Since 2012, 18 people have died while in custody. The Macomb County Sheriff's Department said since David Stojcevski's death, the jail is quicker to send sick inmates to the hospital and has begun building a new central intake facility to access an inmate's risk prior to incarceration.
Hundreds of pages are still classified. The Justice Department refused to turn them over to the Defenders.
David Stojcevski's family said it will not rest until the entire story is told and changes are made at the Macomb County Jail.
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