Witnesses have spoken out after cops hushed up the killing of a suspect in Coconut Creek, Florida last week. The witnesses say they can no longer hold their silence in the face of possible injustice.
39-year-old father of two, Calvon Reid, died after police accosted him inside a gated apartment complex.
Residents John Arendale and Bonnie Eshleman told CBS4 News that they saw at least five police officers jump on an already injured Reid, with one cop yelling “Don’t move, or I’ll break your f**king arm!” as he attempted to cuff the man.
The couple say that Reid was yelling for help, presumably to someone within the complex, shouting “Baby, baby, baby. They’re going to kill me.”
Mr Arendale says that Reid tried to break free, prompting two of the cops to shoot him with tasers, and another to hit him in the head with a baton. The couple claim that Reid’s last words were “I can’t breathe.”
“When he stopped moving that’s when they realized he wasn’t breathing,” Arendale said.
Another witness claims that Reid was asking someone inside the complex for help as he was already injured before the police got to him.
The Coconut Creek police department initially refused to comment on the case, other than to say that Reid “had a lengthy rap sheet.”
However, Reid only appears to have been previously arrested on minor drug possession charges.
Since the witnesses spoke out, police held a press conference Thursday claiming that paramedics had called police after attempting to help Reid. They added that Reid was cut and covered in blood, and that he “exhibited threatening behavior and appeared to be hallucinating.”
A police statement notes that Reid was found “in an agitated, combative state, and incoherent.”
Reid’s father told reporters “It was uncalled for, totally uncalled for,” adding. “We want to know why our son is dead.”
“He wasn’t doing anything wrong, why would they think they had to Tase him?” the father said.
An internal affairs investigation and a criminal investigation are both underway, according to the police, who refrained from providing details on how many times Reid was shocked with tasers, how many officers were involved, or what the official cause of death was. All the officers involved in the incident are still on duty, according to the police chief, who also denied any kind of cover up, and claimed that Reid had died in hospital two days after the incident took place.
“If he refused medical attention, that [choice] was for him,” Reid’s father said. “You can refuse medical attention. Why did they call police? Why did they get them involved?”
“I know what killed him, all that tasing,” the elder Reid added. “And they covered it up. Somebody needs to stand and be liable.”
Steve Watson is a London based writer and editor for Alex Jones’ Infowars.com, and Prisonplanet.com. He has a Masters Degree in International Relations from the School of Politics at The University of Nottingham, and a Bachelor Of Arts Degree in Literature and Creative Writing from Nottingham Trent University.