August 13, 2009

Taser Death: Ernest Ridlehuber (Greenville, SC)


It happened again. A 53-year old father and grandfather, Ernest Ridlehuber, was killed after being shot with 50,000 watts of electricity from the taser gun of a police officer in Greenville, SC.

Ernest Ridlehuber was reported missing by his family on Tuesday evening. The family searched for him most of Wednesday before he was found at a friend’s house on Wednesday afternoon.

When family members went inside the home to get Ridlehuber he became violent with them and they called deputies. The police officers arrived. Ridlehuber was still 'combative'. Deputies said they had no choice but to use their taser gun on the man after threats against them were made.

Ridlehuber collapsed after the shock and later died.

"He was a very big man, and if he didn't want to do something he wasn't going to do it," said Linda Ridlehuber, Ernest Ridlehuber's sister. "It's just hard for me, at this point, to even believe it's happened. It's like a bad dream"
Deputies said the man became violent and wouldn't stop fighting even after being shocked the first time. Police also said they thought he had a gun.

"He came at the officers the officers deployed the Taser -- Tasered the gentlemen -- the man still continued to fight (and) the Taser was deployed several more times," said Greenwood County Sheriff's Office Major John Murray.
When Ridlehuber was handcuffed, deputies said they noticed he wasn't breathing well.

An autopsy will be performed Thursday morning to determine the specific cause of Ridlehuber's death. Toxicology tests will also be performed.

Villager's Thoughts: Since when does a grown-azzed 53-year old man need to get permission to spend some time at a friend's house? Since when do the police feel a need to use a taser multiple times on a guy for being angry? Methinks that his family and the police both overreacted ... and the result is that Mr. Ridlehuber is dead.

3 comments:

wisdomteachesme said...

hey wayne,
it 'sounds' like he has mental issues that either the family knew about and he was not taking his meds, or no one knew about them and he needed to be screened and helped for mental illness.

i agree that a grown man can visit a friend...but there seems tobe 'thing' left out of the family's comments at this point..
Shame he is dead though...tasered more than once...hummmm

Villager said...

WisdomTeachesMe - I understand that a person should take their meds. However, failure to take your meds ain't a reason to be shot to death by police taser. I also think that the sister didn't share the full story in her comments to the press. Something is wrong ... but, the thing most wrong is that a 53-year old man's life is over.

wisdomteachesme said...

i agree with you, another life taken by the wrong means. i asked myself wasn't there another way to hold or calm him down...? though i was not there--so i don't know the fear he put into the people that where.

many (not all), of the mentally ill people that go off their meds or don't- also self-medicate with what is available to them.possibility= when you mix all of that with, let's say a fearful policeman...tragedy happens

i too think that many things were left out by his family member.

Because of the description of how he acted even with his family, they were the ones that called the police. it does not sound right.