A 22-year-old Oak Park man who was on life support for two years after being hospitalized while in a Chicago jail died last month, and his family continues to search for answers.
Tyler Lumar was jailed after an apparent mix-up at the Chicago police lock-up. His family said police had no reason to take him into custody on an outdated warrant stemming from a minor traffic violation in downstate Illinois.
The warrant for Lumar - a father with no criminal record -- was based on a $25 payment that was 4 days late. Police allegedly refused to let him post the $50 bail.
On Sunday, friends and relatives held a vigil to remember Lumar and call for justice for his death.
"All lives matter but evidently they didn't think his did. And now I have to live life broken. I'm broken," said his mother Lisa Alcorn.
Less than 24 hours after Lumar was taken into custody, he was in a hospital on life support. Attorneys for the city argue police did nothing wrong. They have asked the judge to dismiss the case. Police have not explained why they kept Lumar locked up without letting him post bond.
"We shouldn't be remembering Tyler. Tyler should still be here," said girlfriend Casey Tencate, who has a 5-year-old daughter with Lumar named Savannah.
The family has a mountain of medical bills and a lot of unanswered questions.
"We're not gonna rest until justice. My son's death wasn't in vain," said father Wilbert Lumar.
The family has filed a federal lawsuit alleging police wrongfully detained Lumar and failed to check on him every 15 minutes in his cell. Apparently, depressed over his situation, Lumar attempted suicide in the jail, something the family's attorney says is common.
"This is a civil and moral tragedy. That's why I'm fighting for the family. Tyler Lumar should never have been in custody. Now he's dead," said family attorney Eileen O'connor.
A graduate of Oak Park River Forest high school, Lumar was a well-known and popular figure in his community. Many of those who knew him are demanding justice.
"I just felt like what happened to him was just so unjust, more people need to hear his story," said Taylor Tencate, a vigil organizer.
Oak Park man dies two years after apparent mix-up in Chicago jail
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