That was the conclusion of an investigation conducted by the Elkhart County Prosecutor’s Office that found no wrongdoing on the part of police officers. [SOURCE]
Elkhart City Police were called to Smith’s apartment on January 6th of this year by neighbors who heard screaming and other loud noises.
Finally, some appliances near the sink appeared to be damaged with exposed electrical wiring. Smith wrapped his mouth around the exposed wires, despite the officer’s requests to stop.
“While it’s very unfortunate that this apparently troubled young man is dead, and while the actions of the officers may have inadvertently contributed to his death,” said Elkhart County Prosecutor Curtis Hill, “The actions taken by police officers to subdue Mr. Smith were reasonable, appropriate, and necessary to prevent his further harm."An autopsy concluded that the confrontation with police and the restraint that officers used were contributing factors in Smith’s death.
“This was certainly a circumstance that we wanted to take a look at because we have an individual who died while in police custody and following a confrontation with police where the police had engaged in the use of force, albeit one that is clearly intended to be non-lethal,” said Prosecutor Hill.