UPDATE (12:13 a.m. on Wednesday, Mar. 8): Tuesday night, Wilkerson’s family held a candlelight vigil in Central Park. At the event, Wilkerson’s mother Sherri Ford, and brother La Juan Wilkerson tell 13 News this is a much bigger issue that goes beyond their personal loss.

“The injustice for other people has to stop, the injustice they did to my son has to stop and somebody will be held accountable,” Ford said after the vigil.

La Juan Wilkerson says he prefers to not have this case revolve around race, but rather the situation in general. “This is not about no black, no white scenario, it could happen to anybody. We fighting for the human race and for c right now. Justice for C!” Wilkerson said Tuesday night.

We reached out to the Ashland Police Department for a comment on the case but have not heard back yet.

The Kentucky State Police say they are currently waiting on the toxicology report and no new information is being released at this time.

BOYD COUNTY, KY (WOWK) – The family of a man who died in police custody in Ashland this weekend has retained nationally known civil rights and personal injury attorney Ben Crump.

Crump’s law office did not state if any lawsuits have been filed but says a bystander video shows the man, identified as Clarence Wilkerson, allegedly struggling “for several minutes” during the arrest before officers provided medical assistance, as the bystander told officers of her own concerns for Wilkerson’s health.

On Monday, March 6, Kentucky State Police said an autopsy from the Kentucky State Medical Examiner’s office has revealed that Wilkerson’s death was “possibly related to preexisting medical ailments” and not trauma.

Crump’s office says Wilkerson “suffered from an enlarged heart.” Crump released the following statement regarding Wilkerson’s death:

“It is heartbreaking that Clarence’s children and loved ones have to grieve his preventable loss all because officers did not take his clearly declining condition seriously. In the upsetting video, we hear a bystander saying over and over that he needs help, while officers fail to provide aid for several critical minutes. We demand that the Ashland Police Department release all footage they have from this incident and conduct a full investigation so the family and community can see the full picture of how this man lost his life.”

Attorney Ben Crump

Kentucky State Police are investigating the incident. On Monday, KSP said they were called around 1 p.m., Saturday, March 4, from the Ashland Police Department regarding an in-custody death.

According to the APD, officers saw a man who had warrants out for his arrest. Police say when the suspect saw the officers, he allegedly took off running behind a camper, where he allegedly became entangled and stuck in a fence. The man, later identified as Wilkerson, was then arrested by APD officers.

Officers say while Wilkerson was in custody, he began to complain of “ailments and a medical condition,” and was taken to a medical center, where he later died.

Crump has been nationally recognized for his role in civil rights and wrongful death lawsuits, including those of Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown and Tyre Nichols as well as lawsuits in the Flint, MI, water crisis and the 2019 Johnson and Johnson baby powder lawsuit.