Families of Lauren Smith-Fields, Brenda Lee Rawls demand federal investigation

The Bridgeport Police Department has been at the center of a controversy over how they handled the death investigations of Lauren Smith-Fields and Brenda Lee Rawls. The city's police heard from the families who insist the investigators overlooked the cases and treated them with disregard.
Both families want acting Bridgeport Police Chief Rebecca Garcia to be replaced and for the U.S. Department of Justice to take over the investigations.
Smith-Fields' death was determined to be an overdose. Her family says the police department failed to fully investigate whether foul play was involved and was dismissive of their concerns.
"How can you expect a person to rest in peace? She will not be at peace until the situation has resolved in its entirety, and we will make sure that happens and we will make sure she can rest in peace," said Alexis Farrow, cousin of Smith-Fields.
The case of Rawls has raised similar concerns.
As News 12 previously reported, both families accused the police of essentially ignoring the deaths of the women, who died on the same day but in different incidents. They say the men who both women were with called police, but officers did not immediately notify either family about the women's deaths.
The city has since suspended two of the detectives assigned to the cases.