All of the Rochester police officers involved in the fatal March arrest of Daniel Prude, who died after officers placed a hood over his head and pressed his face onto the pavement until he stopped breathing, have been suspended, the city’s mayor announced Thursday.
Their immediate suspension, ordered by Mayor Lovely Warren, comes less than one day after Prude’s family released horrifying police bodycam footage of his final moments, and five months after the 41-year-old’s death.
Prude was left brain dead after his March 23 encounter with Rochester PD. He died seven days later when he was taken off life support.
The Monroe County medical examiner ruled his death a ‘homicide caused by complications of asphyxia in the setting of physical restraint’. The report also listed excited delirium and acute intoxication by phencyclidine, or PCP, as contributing factors.
Prude’s family members have called for the seven officers involved in his arrest to be charged with murder.
All of the officers have now been suspended immediately with pay, pending the outcome of an investigation conducted by New York Attorney General Letitia James.
‘I have never shied away from taking action and holding our police — or anyone that fails in their duties in our community — accountable,’ Mayor Warren told reporters Thursday. ‘That is why I am suspending the officers in question today, against the advice of counsel.
‘You cannot stand around and allow these types of things to happen. You have a duty,' she continued. 'Mr. Daniel Prude was failed by the police department, our mental health care system, our society, and he was failed by me.'
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While the fatal incident occurred on March 23 – weeks before George Floyd would die in Minnesota police custody in May, sparking nationwide protests – Prude’s death received no public attention
Following an order issued by Mayor Lovely Warren, all seven officers involved in the arrest have been suspended. The move comes less than one day after Prude’s family released horrifying police bodycam footage of his final moments, and five months after the 41-year-old’s death.
Daniel Prude was left brain dead after the incident and later died on March 30 after he was taken off of life support – seven days after the encounter with police in Rochester
Prude’s brother Joe had phoned 911 for assistance on March 23, as his sibling began suffering a mental health episode. The 41-year-old, who had been visiting Rochester from his hometown of Chicago, walked out of Joe’s house at around 3am in frigid temperatures, wearing only underwear, a tank top and socks.
As he made his way through the neighborhood, he started removing his clothes. Police claim he also smashed windows. Several other people encountered him, with at least one calling 911 to report his erratic behavior.
There were seven officers of Rochester PD present on the night Daniel Prude died in police custody.
Six of them have so far been named:
Officer Mark Vaughn;
Officer Paul Ricotta;
Officer Andrew Specksgoor;
Officer Josiah Harris;
Officer Troy Talladay;
Sgt. Michael Magri.
Prude was then stopped by Officer Mark Vaughn from the Rochester PD. Vaughn, pointing a taser, ordered him to lay on the ground and put his hands behind his back, to which he complied. Officer Vaughn then handcuffed Prude as he lay on his stomach.
The bodycam footage shows Prude sitting in the ground in handcuffs. He is heard yelling incoherently at the officers, shouting ‘Jesus Christ’ and ‘Give me your gun, I need it'. At one point, he invites officers to ‘come and look at this big d***,’ to which the cops on scene respond with laughter.
Officers stood around Prude in a semicircle. He began spitting at them, yelling out to the cops that he had COVID-19.
Prude continued to yell at officers and at one point attempted to get to his feet. Officers were seen pushing him back over and then slamming his head into the ground.
Prude demanded they remove the spit hood, saying, ‘trying to kill me!,’ before making muffled, anguished sounds from under the hood.
For more than two minutes, officers pinned Prude down on the cold ground. Officer Vaughn used both hands to push the side of Prude’s head into the pavement, in a push-up position with his knees suspended off the ground.
Another officer used his knee at one point to hold down Prude’s torso, and a third held down his legs.
Prude is heard screaming under the weight of the officers pinning him down, however his words are muffled as his face is pushed hard into the ground. Officers are heard urging him to ‘stop spitting’.
The officers appear to become concerned when they notice water coming out of Prude’s mouth.
Officer Talladay is seen placing a kneww into Prude's back as he lay on the floor
For nearly three minutes, officers pinned Prude down on the cold ground. One officer used both hands to push the side of Prude’s head into the pavement
Officer Vaughn used both hands to push the side of Prude’s head into the pavement, similar to a triangle push-up
Prude is heard screaming under the weight of the officers pinning him down, however his words are muffled as his face is pushed hard into the ground. Officers are heard urging him to ‘stop spitting’
The 41-year-old then suddenly falls deathly silent and still, having lost consciousness under the restraint
When EMTs arrive on scene, the officers unhandcuff Prude, roll him on his back and attempt chest compression after realizing he has no pulse
The 41-year-old then suddenly falls deathly silent and still, having lost consciousness under the restraint.
New York Attorney General Letitia James said on Wednesday that she would investigate Prude's death.
'The death of Daniel Prude was a tragedy, and I extend my deepest condolences to his family. I share the community’s concerns about ensuring a fair and independent investigation into his death and support their right to protest.
'Pursuant to Executive Order 147, the Special Investigations and Prosecutions Unit of my office is already actively investigating this incident.
'As with every investigation, we will follow the facts of this case and ensure a complete and thorough examination of all relevant parties.sonos sonos One (Gen 2) - Voice Controlled Smart Speaker with Amazon Alexa Built-in - Black read more
'We will work tirelessly to provide the transparency and accountability that all our