A 21-year-old Baltimore man who was beaten by police after they responded to a 9-11 call requesting medical assistance for him, has died as a result of his injuries this Wednesday.
Tawon Boyd was allegedly punched multiple times and choked by an officer after Baltimore County police officers responded to a 9-11 call that was reportedly from Boyd’s girlfriend, although an attorney for the Boyd family says it was Boyd who actually made the call.
Attorney Latoya Francis-Williams claims Boyd made the call because he was feeling disoriented and wanted to be taken to the hospital.
“They really were supposed to be there to get him to the nearest healthcare facility,” Francis-Williams said in a statement.
According to officers on the scene, Boyd appeared “confused and paranoid” and told them that his girlfriend, “got him intoxicated and is secretly recording him while someone else is in the home.”
Boyd then allegedly tried to climb into two different police vehicles before running to a neighbor’s house, pleading with them to call the police.
But the Boyd family attorney said that police didn’t restrain Boyd; what they did instead amounted to an “attack.”
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“He is literally attacked. And by attacked, I mean [Boyd’s girlfriend] is describing that he struck many times and struck to the ground,” Francis-Williams explained. “Officer Bowman is the one that when he arrived, really started wailing on Mr. Boyd, meaning Mr. Boyd was on the ground in a prone position and Bowman sat on him, almost straddled his back, and put his left arm under Boyd’s neck and pulled his head up in a choking fashion.”
According to the police report, “officers were able to get him under control by using our body weight to keep him on the ground. Officer Bowman controlled Suspect Boyd’s head and arms by holding him down with his arms while I held Suspect Boyd down by leaning on his buttocks/thigh area with my knees and using my arms.”
Francis-Williams said Boyd’s girlfriend saw a slightly different scene:
“According to the witness, Mr Boyd was screaming ‘stop stop, I can’t breathe.’ That could have been from the choking but at the same time, Officer Bowman is punching and striking Mr Boyd in the face and in the neck area. The witness described that after a little she’s screaming stop and Mr Boyd is kind of foaming at the mouth or spitting and his body goes limp.”
Boyd’s autopsy is expected to be completed this month.
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