August 15, 2009

Taser Death: Terrace Clifton Smith (Moreno Valley, CA)

52-year old Terrace Clifton Smith died on August 9, following a confrontation with deputies in Moreno Valley, CA.

Deputies encountered Smith shortly before noon after residents called to complain that he was randomly banging on their front doors and walking in the middle of the street, according to the sheriff's department.

When deputies tried to detain him, Smith became “physically combative with them,” said sheriff's Sgt. Dennis Gutierrez.

As deputies tried to put Smith in restraints, a Taser was used on him, at which point he quit resisting and was handcuffed, according to Gutierrez.

Within moments of being restrained, Smith had a seizure, Gutierrez said.

Deputies rendered first aid, followed by paramedics, who rushed Smith to Riverside County Regional Medical Center. Smith was pronounced dead at the hospital at 12:34 p.m. Sunday, the coroner's office stated.

Sheriff's Detective Javier Rodriguez said the sheriff's homicide unit and the District Attorney's Office are investigating the case.

Right now, we're waiting on the cause of death,” Rodriguez said. “We have to wait for toxicology results just to see what, if anything, was in the person's system.”
Autopsy results may not be released for another four to six weeks, Rodriguez said.

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