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Saturday, November 14, 2009

58-year-old South Carolina manTasered to Death by Corpus Christi police

CORPUS CHRISTI — According to caller.com, and kristv, a 58-year-old South Carolina man who police subdued using a Taser and then performed CPR on died Friday.

The man was removed from life support Friday afternoon by doctors at Christus Spohn Hospital South, said Corpus Christi Police Capt. Todd Green, department spokesman.

Authorities wouldn’t release the man’s name, pending notification of family members. An autopsy will be done by the Nueces County Medical Examiner’s Office to determine an official cause of death, police said. The autopsy could take days depending upon the medical examiner’s workload Monday morning, according to Ric Ortiz, an assistant to the medical examiner.

“A preliminary investigation has shown the officers acted appropriately in responding to an aggressive individual who was acting erratically,” said Police Chief Troy Riggs “Unfortunately, he has died and we will continue the investigation.”

The five patrol officers who were placed on paid administrative leave have been cleared to work, Green said. Placing the officers on paid administrative is a routine policy for incidents under investigation, he said.
The incident began at 6:54 p.m. Wednesday when officer Stephan Beletic saw drivers flashing their headlights at Cimarron Boulevard and Airline Road. Beletic saw a man riding his bicycle illegally against the flow of traffic and attempted to stop him. The man didn’t stop and rode into a parking lot of restaurant where he banged on the restaurant’s window and spoke unintelligibly, Green said.

Beletic, who already had called for backup, began to frisk the man to make sure he wasn’t armed.
The man resisted, and Beletic managed to cuff one hand, but the man continued to struggle. Officers Ross Murray and Daryl Anderson arrived on the scene and Murray used a Taser, hitting the man in the lower back. The man appeared unaffected by the 50,000-volt stun gun, Green said, adding that police aren’t sure if the probe even penetrated the several layers of clothes the man was wearing.

Murray then placed the Taser on the man’s shoulder blade and shocked him, Green reported. The man continued to be combative, Green said.

Anderson used pepper spray, which also did little. Officer Jason Rhodes arrived and the four fell to the ground in a struggle with the man.

It wasn’t until a fifth officer, Jason Tello, arrived that they were able to finishing handcuffing the man, Green said.

Once the man was in custody, he quit breathing, Green said. MORE HERE

AAPP: How many more deaths will it take before America gets angry and asks for a Federal inquiry into the tasering and torture of American Citizens? Why is it that we only have 2,000 signed petitions for a Congressional hearing on Taser Torture? Enough is enough folks.  

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