A TUCSON police chief has offered to resign after footage showed a cuffed Latino man crying and begging for water before dying while in custody.
Police Chief Chris Magnus said the police department was "deeply troubled" with how they handled the arrest of Carlos Ingram-Lopez, during a Wednesday news conference.
Magnus stated: “To demonstrate my willingness to take accountability for these mistakes, I am offering my resignation to the Mayor, City Council, and City Manager, which they can accept or handle as they view appropriate."
He offered to resign after disclosing the details of the April 21 arrest which led to the 27-year-old Hispanic man's death.
Three Tucson police officers involved in the incident have since resigned and have not yet been charged.
Magnus shared disturbing body cam footage of the 27-year-old Hispanic man's arrest.
He explained that Lopez' grandmother had called 911 at around 1am on April 21 and told the operator her grandson was "drunk, yelling, and running around the house naked," Magnus explained.
Prior to being cuffed, he was "acting in a highly erratic manor" in the dark garage.
When officers arrived, Lopez ran to a dark garage where he was restrained for about 12 minutes.
While in police custody, he repeatedly asked for water and said he couldn't breath.
"Nana, nana, please some water," Lopez can be heard saying.
He is also heard yelling "I'm sorry" multiple times.
At one point in the video, yellow blankets were put over Lopez's naked body and an officer threatened to use a Taser on him.
According to Magnus, the officers violated training protocol by restraining the victim face down, however, a chokehold was not used on Lopez.
“I can’t say enough, this is a terrible tragedy. The officers, in this case, did not live up to our department’s high standard," Magnus said.
The case is still being reviewed, but Magnus said if the officers would have been terminated if they chose not to resign.
Lopez was declared dead at the scene by EMS workers and was determined to have had a high level of cocaine in his system and a heart condition.
According to the Pima County Medical Examiner: “The cause of death is ascribed to sudden cardiac arrest in the setting of acute cocaine intoxication and physical restraint with cardiac left ventricular hypertrophy as a significant contributing condition."
Tucson Mayor Regina Romero praised Magnus for being "an honest, great police chief for the city of Tucson" – but also expressed her outrage with how Lopez was treated.
Responding to his resignation offer, she said: "I retain the right to think about what he's presented to the public and Mayor and Council today."
Romero added: "In the videos, we see a person that is clearly distressed, asking for water, asking for help, asking for this Nana.
"Now, we must center the conversation on police accountability and transparency.
"We mourn Carlos Adrian Ingram-Lopez. He was a member of our community. We must act to continue the important work of meaningful and fundamental change. We can, and we must, do better."
Lopez's death reveal, comes a week after Andres Guardado, 18, was shot dead in Gardena, California, after police allegedly spotted him with a gun in front of a business.
Guardado’s family have now called for an independent investigation into the teen security guard’s death.
Their deaths come amid the killings of several African Americans such as Rayshard Brooks and George Floyd.
George Floyd's death sparked anti-police brutality protests across America and continued support for the “Black Lives Matter” movement.
Source: Read Full Article