Wed, Apr 25 01:41 PM |OMG

Family Livid Over Police Trying To Access Cell Phone With Dead Man's Finger — Video

A family in Florida is very upset after investigators went to a funeral home and attempted to use the dead man's finger to access his locked cellphone, after he was shot dead by police.

Linus Phillip, 30, died after being shot six times in the back by a Largo police officer last month. Police claim Phillip tried to drive away before the officer could search him. 

The grieving family were shocked when detectives showed up at the Sylvan Abbey Funeral Home, where they held Phillip's hands up to the phone's fingerprint sensor to attempt to unlock it.

Phillip's fiancée, Victoria Armstrong, stated that she felt violated and disrespected by the officer's actions. The couple have two children together. Their young daughter lost her battle with leukemia last year and their son Isaac is 16-months-old.

Victoria stated, "I just felt so disrespected and violated."


The detective's attempt to unlock the phone failed, but they had hoped to find information on the device that would help in the investigation of his death. 


Legal experts weighed in on the actions of the detectives, which most agree was legal. However, most also agree that the incident was inappropriate.

A professor at Stetson University College of Law, said, "While the deceased person doesn’t have a vested interest in the remains of their body, the family sure does, so it really doesn’t pass the smell test. There’s a ghoulish component to it that’s troubling to most people."




The family filed a complaint against the detectives over their behavior at the funeral home. 

They are also considering filing a lawsuit against the City of Largo for unwarranted search and seizure, and obtaining illegal access to the body after it had left city custody.

Philip's family stated he was pulled over at a WaWa gas station because the tint on his rental car was too dark.

Officers claimed they could smell marijuana and they tried to detain him. They said he attempted to drive away, which led police to fire four shots through the passenger window, killing him.

The family was initially told that WaWa’s security cameras caught video of the incident. However, they were later told the view was obscured and they only had video of the police giving Linus CPR.



Phillip's grieving mother, Martha Hicks, told ABC News, "They killed him after his 30th birthday. Oh god he turned 30 on March 11. It's too much too much we just want to know what happened."

Phillips fiancée stated, "My son is no longer going to go have a father, or to make his dad proud. He's not here anymore because of this and the police are slandering his name like some awful person. We are fighting to find out what happened."


A GoFundMe page was set up for Phillip with a goal of $50,000. 


The Justice for Linus Phillip page states, "Another unarmed black man killed by police."

The page reads, "Linus Phillip loved his children, and was a devoted family man. He loved taking his kids to the park and spending time with family. When his daughter was born with a rare cancer, he refused to leave the hospital, even to get a haircut. He also enjoyed sports, and playing Madden Football and NBA2K on PS4. He also loved comedy clubs, and often took his wife Victoria to the Improv in Tampa."


Do you believe the Police went too far?

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