The son of the late reggae icon and marijuana activist Peter Tosh was left in a coma following an attack in a New Jersey jail, where he was serving a six-month sentence on pot possession charges.
Jawara McIntosh has been hospitalized since suffering traumatic brain injuries in the attack in February at the Bergen County jail, where he was after pleading guilty to marijuana possession, his family said.
McIntosh, of Boston, performed under the stage name Tosh1. His father started the Wailers along with Bob Marley and Bunny Wailer. His 1976 hit “Legalize It” remains a rallying cry for those pushing to make marijuana legal.
Jawara McIntosh is also a pro-marijuana activist and performed the song outside of the New Jersey statehouse in April 2014 during a rally pushing for state and federal lawmakers to legalize or decriminalize marijuana.
His family has filed a notice that it plans to sue the county and also wants the U.S. Justice Department to investigate. McIntosh is hospitalized in Boston and remains unresponsive and in a coma, suffering from brain damage, she said.
McIntosh was arrested in New Jersey in June 2013 after police said they found more than 65 pounds of marijuana in the trunk of his rental car.
Peter Tosh was himself beaten unconscious by Jamaican police during an incident at Half Way Tree in Jamaica’s capital. He was killed in Jamaica in 1987 during a home invasion robbery.
Rastafarians regard cannabis as a sacrament.
Jawara McIntosh has four children, including an 11-year-old daughter who performed a song she wrote for him at his hospital bedside.