Prince George's County State's Attorney Alex Williams said yesterday he had been asked by two people to investigate the drug-related death of Forestville High School football star Rico Marshall, but added that he would not begin a probe without evidence or information about wrongdoing.
Williams received a phone call yesterday afternoon from the Rev. Horrace Hillsman, who had told the congregation gathered for Marshall's funeral Thursday night that he would seek such an investigation.
Williams said Hillsman had provided no basis for such an investigation, adding that the state's attorney's office could not be used to satisfy curiosity.
"You have to have a basis for foul play," Williams said in an interview. "If someone is out there and has some information, we'll look at it."
Marshall, a senior at Forestville, was buried Thursday afternoon, five days after dying from an overdose of cocaine. Police said the youth swallowed six chunks of crack to avoid arrest by two officers in the 1400 block of Nova Avenue in Capitol Heights, and the state medical examiner ruled the death a cocaine overdose.
Police also said Marshall had been arrested in December in the same area with 66 bags of the cocaine derivative and was charged with possession with intent to distribute. He was a juvenile at the time but had turned 18 last week.
At Marshall's funeral, Hillsman had speculated aloud that Marshall may have been physically forced to swallow the crack and he announced to the congregation of nearly 500 that he wanted Williams to find out.
"I just have some questions," Hillsman reiterated yesterday, adding that he outlined those questions to Williams. Among them: What happened during Marshall's encounter with the officers? Were the officers who stopped Marshall last Saturday the same ones who reportedly arrested him Dec. 22?
In an interview, Williams said: "I don't have a problem with scenarios, but what is the basis? That is an outright rejection of law enforcement. It's not my obligation to second-guess every case law enforcement brings over. Some are questionable . . . but I've got to be reasonable."
A Williams spokeswoman said he had received no further requests or calls from the community or Marshall's family. Williams doesn't remember the name of the second caller, spokeswoman Alexis Revis said.