In The News
Seaside Police get new restraining tool
Watch video on KION 5 News Central Coast
Watsonville police try new ‘Wrap’ for combative suspects
Read article on the Santa Cruz Sentinel
Cedar Park Police Purchase 'Wraps' For Combative Suspects
Read article on KLBJ Austin
Cedar Park PD hopes new device will minimize use of force
VIDEO: The WRAP makes for safer arrest
Watch video on KEYE Austin
Cedar Park Police Department Press Release: Cedar Park Police Adopt Use of The Wrap
Read article on thepolicenews.net
The Institute for the Prevention of In-Custody Deaths found The WRAP to cause no deaths or injuries. Visit IPICD.com for more information.
Videos - Would The WRAP have helped?
Use of force
Legal Decisions & Settlements
The WRAP reduces the risk of injury and death, as well as minimizes the potential for costly liability issues.
City will Settle Civil Rights Suit
Family of man who died in tussle with police to get $1.5M
The family of a mentally ill man who died during a 2008 confrontation with Richmond police will receive $1.5 million to settle a civil rights lawsuit, the City Council decided this week.
"All that money piled up to heaven. I would rather have him back," said Elaine Dach, whose son stopped breathing after officers discharged Tasers, used pepper spray and hit him with batons. "He was so precious to us."
A coroner's jury ruled that the death of 26-year-old Uriah Dach was accidental.
Police Chief Chris Magnus said Friday he regretted the outcome, but disagreed with the sharp assessment of Dach's family and their attorney about his officers' preparation and competence in working with out-of-control mentally ill people.
"Some of our officers are actually better trained than those at other police departments," Magnus said. "We think that is necessary because we do deal with a large number of people with mental health problems."
Dach, who was 6-foot-3 and weighed 350 pounds, suffocated while several officers tried to restrain him April 22, 2008, in his rented room at a home on Florida Avenue.
A roommate called police because he kicked in her door, broke furniture and threatened to kill her.
Police and Dach's family differ about what officers found when they arrived. Police say that Dach tore up the house and threw or attempted to throw large objects, finally retreating into his bedroom. Attorney Michael Haddad said Dach tried to flee from the officers but never struck them.
The department contends that Dach presented an immediate threat to others in the house and needed to go to a hospital for mental evaluation.
Haddad said evidence did not recommend such an aggressive approach.
"These officers were never disciplined. And, after every use of the Taser, there is supposed to be an investigation. This was never investigated," Haddad said. "They did not need to subdue him."
The family contends that Dach suffocated after repeated Tasing, pepper spray and a beating with batons because police wrestled with him to restrain him and left him facedown, a position in which he could not easily breathe.
Police said at the time they did the best they could to safely restrain the aggressive, violent man, who had had other recent episodes of violence.
Police had been called to Doctors Medical Center in San Pablo the previous day, when the hospital staff felt Dach was threatening them.
Dach's sister, Katie Dach, said that she and her mother would like the Richmond police to set up a special unit to handle mentally ill people, or at least get better training.
"What they did to my brother was not OK," she said. "They need to take into more consideration how to treat the mentally ill people."
Days after Dach's death, a schizophrenic man died at a hospital after a tussle with Richmond police, who were trying to handcuff him.
A staffer called police to Alan Arce's residential care facility because the 51-year-old had been shouting and gesticulating, and she feared he might turn violent.
Arce tried to flee when the officers arrived. A coroner's jury cleared police in the death and ruled that Arce, who had asthma and hypertension, died of natural causes.
Elaine Dach said that she plans to use the settlement money to advocate for better treatment for the mentally ill.
"It's good that there's closure, but I don't really feel like it's justice because the people that are involved are still saying that they're not taking on guilt," she said. "That kind of hurts."
$240,000 Settlement is Reached in Hog-Tying Death
The Associated Press - Ogden, Utah
"Officers may not apply this technique when a person's diminished capacity is apparent. The diminished capacity might result from severe intoxication, the influence of controlled substances, a discernible mental condition or any other condition, apparent to the officers at the time which would make the application of a hog-tie restraint likely to result in any significant risk to the individual's health or well-being. A review of the known dangers of the hog-tie restraint supports this position."
A review of this case makes the use of the hog-tie, when diminished capacity is involved, a liability risk.
John W. McTigue,
Chief Deputy District Attorney
Contra Costa County, California
Hog-Tie Restraints and Positional Asphyxia = A Risk
“Officers may not apply this technique when a person’s diminished capacity is apparent.”
The parents of an adult male who died of asphyxia while restrained by deputy sheriffs filed a wrongful death suit against the county. The adult male stood in the middle of a busy intersection and fired a loaded gun into the air and at passing motorists. The police responded by arresting the adult male and placed him in the back of the police car. The adult male started thrashing about, and the deputies pulled him out of the car, laid the still handcuffed adult male facedown on the round and executed a total appendage restraint procedure (TARP). By the time the deputies finished, the adult male was unconscious. The paramedics who came to the scene found he was no longer breathing and were unable to revive him. A jury found the county negligent, that the county's negligence was the cause of the deceased's death, and that 35 percent of the negligence was attributable to the deceased's conduct. The jury awarded $2 million to the parents.
The Court of Appeals remanded the matter to the trial court for a new trial on the damage issues, and affirmed the judgment in all other respects.
$2 million awarded in wrongful death lawsuit
Adult male dies of asphyxia while restrained. Parents win judgement.
OGDEN, UTAH. The Weber County Sheriff's Office and the family of Glen Lutz have settled for $240,000 in a lawsuit over Lutz's hog-tying death.
"It was a compromise on both sides." Said Loni DeLand, lawyer for the Lutz family. "We weren't ecstatic about the amount, nor was the defense."
The suit filed by Lutz's family sought $27 million in damages for the death they claimed was related to the October 16, 1999, traffic stop where three deputies hog-tied the combative Lutz.
Put on his stomach with his hands handcuffed behind his back and tethered to his shackled legs, Lutz briefly stopped breathing and lapsed into a coma. Deputies called paramedics after Lutz's breathing became labored but did not fully untie him. He died a month later without regaining consciousness.
A neighbor videotaped the incident. Deputies Steve Handy, Chris Bitten and Brian Jacobs can be heard on the tape yelling obscenities at Lutz.
From the $240,000, $152,086 will be divided among Lutz's widow, Laurie, and two sons, Jerad and John. The rest goes to the defense team's fees and costs.