(2015-10-05) CALIFORNIA: Autopsy results for man who died in Pasadena police custody placed on security hold

Published on October 5 2016 by admin

http://www.pasadenastarnews.com/general-news/20161005/autopsy-results-for-man-who-died-in-pasadena-police-custody-placed-on-security-hold

DEATH: Reginald Thomas, Jr.

PASADENA: An autopsy was done this week on a man who died after Pasadena police used a Taser on him, then handcuffed him and restrained his legs. But sheriff’s officials are preventing the release of any information about the coroner’s report.

“There is a security hold for a reason. The investigation is active and open,” said Capt. Steve Katz of the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau which is investigating the Sept. 30 death of Reginald Thomas, Jr.

Detectives are waiting for the coroner to complete its investigation which includes toxicology tests, according to Katz.

Pasadena police went to the apartment complex at 252 E. Orange Grove Blvd. on a report of a family disturbance. Police received five 911 calls about the incident; twice someone called and hung up.

Police were told Thomas was armed with a knife and was on drugs.

Thomas was holding a knife and a fire extinguisher when officers saw him. Officers fired a Taser at him when he didn’t obey orders to drop the objets, according to sheriff’s officials. Police wrestled him into custody.

Sheriff’s Homicide Lt. Mike Rosson said officers used the Taser on Thomas three times. Only one was effective.

They also handcuffed him and restrained his legs. Then officers noticed he wasn’t breathing.

Efforts to resuscitate him were unsuccessful. Thomas died at the scene.

Two officers were injured during the struggle with Thomas. One broke a hand and another suffered a hyperextended knee.

That night, about 200 people protested Thomas’ death and marched to the Pasadena Police Department and City Hall.

Caree Harper, a lawyer who represents Thomas’ family, said at Monday press conference that witnesses saw officers kick Thomas in the head and beat him with a baton. Thomas, who has eight children and a ninth on the way, called police because he was having a medical emergency, according to Harper.

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