Delbert McNeil, an unarmed handcuffed 49-year-old grandfather, died after being tased in police custody in Hamlin, Texas, on Dec. 9.
The Hamlin Police Department claimed that they responded to reports of a “male suspect, possibly under the influence, throwing items in front of a local business,” notes KTXS.
The police also claimed that McNeil became “combative and violent and assaulted the officers,” and was taken into custody.
According to the Hamlin Police Department, McNeil somehow fought with paramedics even though police had him in custody: “Additional officers were requested along with Emergency Medical Services. The male suspect was agitated and began to fight with the EMS personnel.”
The cops claimed McNeil collapsed and was taken to a hospital where he later died, but a video of the incident by Mary Jane Erwin-McNiel recorded McNeil being tased in a police car and screaming.
Erwin-McNiel posted the video Facebook and wrote:
I have waited to post this for the family. I can say I seen Delbert running down the middle of street to being in front of Allsups “not throwing anything “ as reported also at this time he inside the car handcuffed behind his back.
Use your own judgment if this is excessive use of force time is 1:37am. He is pronounced dead still in Hamlin at 5:00am. Were did they go when they drove off?
McNeil’s daughter Tabitha Harley Brown shared the video on Facebook and wrote:
This was my fathers last moments, let me ask y’all if this was your father, how would you feel. Not getting answers from Hamlin PD story’s changing timelines not adding up.
And then you finally see your dad 6 days after his death you see how bad he suffered (beaten) and to see this chilling video hearing my daddy scream for his life. That is the last video of my dad and his horrifying last words will forever haunt me.
McNeil’s brother Johnny told KTXS that McNeil was a Mental Health Mental Retardation (MHMR) patient:
I think [the police] should have contacted MHMR first to let them know he was having an episode.
Johnny said Hamlin Police Chief Bobby Evans told him that McNeil had a heart attack on the way to the hospital.
Debra Adkisson, a neighbor, said McNeil was tased at least twice in the police car while handcuffed:
He was in the backseat, cuffed. What else could he do? Kind of bewildered because he was a friend. To see this happen right in front of my house and then the next morning to find out that he’s passed.
Johnny said his family was not allowed to see McNeil’s body before it was taken for an autopsy:
We’re going to find out the truth.