April 2, 2012

Video Supports Taser Lawsuit: Preston Bussey III (Rockledge, FL)

Preston Bussey was unarmed. He was at the Wuesthoff Medical Center emergency room where he voluntarily sought treatment. That didn't matter to Rockledge Police Department officers who electrocuted him at least six times in 2009. You can see the video of this unarmed man in the moments before his untimely taser-related death.

Surveillance camera footage reveals an unarmed Bussey pulling away from police officers who did not tell him they intended to take him into custody. Police enter the hospital with Tasers raised and aimed at the patient. Bussey backs away and then follows instructions to get to his knees. The video shows the officers aiming their Tasers at his back and chest and then shooting Bussey multiple times when he steps away.

The excessive force used by these police officers resulted in the death of Preston Bussey. The lawsuit filed by the family is in the judicial pipeline.

Preston Bussey III
It seems obvious that Bussey did not harm anyone, commit a crime, possess a weapon or threaten anyone with aggression. Yet, the police treated him like an armed and dangerous violent criminal, and used unjustified, unnecessary, unreasonable and excessive force to detain him.

The lawsuit indicates that Defendants Sgt. Timothy Hewitt, Cpl. Yvette Gomez, and Officers Patrick Kennedy, Timothy Herberner, Don Williams, Robert Owens and Matthew Leverich together and individually battered, tasered and suffocated unarmed Bussey with a pillow case. The medical examiner concluded that the officers shot Bussey with a stun gun six times -- more than twice the limit set by Rockledge Police Department policy.

This blog continues to track the taser-related deaths of American citizens ... the vast majority of them UNARMED.


Carolyn said...

It becomes increasingly difficult for me to view these taser tapes. Thank you and others in the Afro Spear forum for keeping the spotlight on this travesty of justice and due process.

Villager said...

Carolyn - I think that I need to take some time to reflect on the information that we've been sharing. I'm uncertain what the end game is for those of us who think something is wrong. It's not enough to simply document the taser-related deaths. How can we reduce the number of them?

Suela said...

The use of tasers and excessive force by police has to be stopped. If a taser or a gun is put in the hands of someone who's prone to racial profiling, ignorance and fear, then the outcome will be yet another black man dead. When the police entered the hospital their tasers were in hand. They tased Bussey 6 times... 6 times, and nothing was done?! Why were the police called to the hospital? Why did Norman Wolfinger chose not to investigate yet another case where a black man is killed in Seminole County. How many other cases have been sweep under the rug? Preston Bussey was my first cousin & he is so very missed!

Villager said...

Suela - I feel as if this is a nationwide problem ... not just in Seminole County. That said, I'm very sorry about what happened to your cousin. Our prayers go out to you and your family...