Family Says Deputies Used Excessive Force In Man's Death
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
July 26, 2006
PERRIS, CALIFORNIA--The family of a 21-year-old man with autism is accusing Riverside County Sheriff's deputies of using excessive force that resulted in his death.
Wanda Mitchell told the Press-Enterprise that she called 9-1-1 on July 19 so officers could come and help calm down her son, Raymond, from having a tantrum. When two deputies arrived, Raymond reportedly ran to his bedroom and hid in the closet. Once his mother coaxed Raymond out of the closet and onto his bed, two officers jumped on him to restrain him.
The deputies then told Ms. Mitchell to leave the room as others arrived to assist in the restraint. She later said that at one point she saw six officers on top of her son.
Officers performed CPR on Raymond after he stopped breathing. He was pronounced dead later at a local hospital.
Deputies said they suspected Raymond had been using methamphetamine, a claim that his mother has denied.
"I think (officers) need to tell the truth. They were not equipped to handle Raymond," she said.
The coroner is awaiting results from toxicology tests before determining a cause of death.
"Autistic man dies after clash with deputies" (Press-Enterprise)
"Sheriff: Deadly fight provoked" (Press-Enterprise)
"Family Criticizes Deputies After Autistic Man Dies" (KCAL-TV)