May 21, 2009

Family of Jamaal Valentine Must Wait Four Weeks for Medical Examiner Report

Jamaal Anderson is a 27-year old Black man who sought medical attention for a potential heart attack while on the streets of a Houston suburb. He didn't deserve to die.

Valentine was found by police Sunday night after drivers reported the 27-year-old was in the middle of Main Street in La Marque trying to stop cars. Keith Pope was one of those motorists who pulled over and called police after he said Valentine told him that he thought he was having a heart attack and needed medical help.

Although Pope said he was expecting an ambulance, three officers arrived. Instead of providing medical attention, the officers tried to arrest Valentine, Pope said.

The officers said Valentine was combative and fought them, at one point reaching for an officer’s pistol.

That is when one of the officers pulled his Taser and killed Valentine. It seems simple to me ... Valentine would be alive today if the police didn't shock his body with 50,000 volts of electricity.

It's not so simple for the powers that be in Texas. A medical examiner’s spokeswoman said that medical examiner Dr. Stephen Pustilnik said the cause of death of Jamaal Valentine cannot be determined “pending toxicology” test results. Those results can take up to four weeks to be completed, the medical examiner said. [SOURCE]

It boggles my mind that three La Marque police officers couldn't deal with a sick man in some manner less than the deadly force of their tasers. Doesn't the use of force continuum apply in Texas?

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