Family of woman found dead in unused Alabama police van retains civil rights attorney Ben Crump

Nation and World

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – A nationally known attorney will soon be representing the family of a 29-year-old Black woman found dead inside an Alabama police van.

Ben Crump will be representing the family of Christina Nance, whose body was discovered Oct. 7 inside a Huntsville Police van parked outside the main police building.

Police said an officer walking by the old, unused van noticed Nance’s body inside the vehicle.

Many questions still remain including how Nance got into the van and how long she was there before she was discovered.

Crump tweeted the announcement Wednesday, saying he will “get to the truth of what happened to Christina Nance.” Nationally, Crump has represented the families of Ahmaud Arbery, Geroge Floyd, and Breonna Taylor, as well as the families of Dana Fletcher and Nigel Shelby locally.

The Madison County coroner said there were no signs of foul play in Nance’s death.

The cause of death was still pending further study, according to Coroner Tyler Berryhill.

Nexstar’s WHNT spoke to Nance’s family Sunday and Monday. The family has asked for surveillance video from the parking lot and said they may seek an independent autopsy, pending the results of the one ordered by police.

Asked twice about surveillance video of the lot, Huntsville police would only say that a video review is underway, declining to add further information.

The Huntsville Police Department said the van was purchased in 1995 and was used to transport inmates. A spokesperson for HPD said 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, HPD said.

Nance’s family told WHNT she was loved and is missed. A GoFundMe account has been set up for the Nance family, with the proceeds going towards burial expenses and the cost of the independent autopsy.

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