Los Angeles Times 2013/05/23: Kern County says heart disease, not beating, caused man's death

Discussion in 'Media Coverage & Other Related Materials' started by M, May 24, 2013.

  1. M

    M Muckraker Staff Member

    L.A. Times (5/23/2013): Kern County says heart disease, not beating, caused man's death

    A man at the center of a videotaped altercation with Kern County sheriff's deputies earlier this month died from heart disease, not baton blows, authorities said Thursday. The county coroner's office labeled David Sal Silva's death accidental, adding that the primary cause was hypertensive heart disease.​


    The attorney for the Silva family expressed deep skepticism about the autopsy findings, saying it's hard to believe the baton blows and dog bites did not in any way contribute to Silva's death. "They're trying to say he died of natural causes," David Cohn told the Bakersfield Californian. "Who would believe that?"​

    [There you are, folks: An intoxicated 33-year-old man sleeping on a lawn is assaulted by 9 cops & a dog and magically dies of natural causes. Donny's coroner -- who is also the same Donny -- says so.]


    [Personally I find Youngblood's attempt at explaining what happened very disturbing. Where I live, passed-out drunks are often hauled to detox in an ambulance. They are not assaulted with knuckle rubs and police dogs. Anyone with alcohol or mental issues is at serious risk in Kern County:]

    Youngblood said the first deputy to arrive found Silva lying on the ground and gave him a knuckle rub on the chest to try to wake him up.​

    According to the sheriff: Silva got up on his knees and then fell over on his face. When the deputy tried to help him up, Silva "took a rigid stance." The deputy warned Silva he would release a police dog on him if he did not cooperate. When Silva continued to resist, the deputy remotely released the dog from his cruiser. The dog bit Silva several times and bit the handler deputy as well, Youngblood said. Silva grabbed the dog by the throat.​

    More deputies arrived, and the struggle continued, the sheriff said, with officers eventually "hobbling" him by tying his ankles and wrists.​

    These are earlier versions of the same L.A. Times article:

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