A man has died whilst in custody following what police have described as a “violent confrontation” in which both capsicum spray and a taser were deployed.
The 38 year-old man allegedly entered a McDonald’s restaurant on Bowral Road in Mittagong and claimed he’d been assaulted by an unknown party. Staff called Police when his behaviour became “troublesome” and “disruptive.” Two officers responded to the call at around 8:50pm on Sunday night. A physical confrontation between the man and police ensued, with police deploying both capsicum spray and a taser in attempts to subdue him.
He was transported to Bowral Police Station and was in the process of being formally booked when he collapsed to the ground. Police and ambulance officers performed CPR on the man, but he could not be revived and was subsequently pronounced dead.
NSW Police Assistant Commissioner Gary Worboys announced an immediate investigation into the incident, fronting media earlier this morning.
“When police first arrived, they spoke to the individual, there was some physical confrontation in terms of the arrest. Police also used capsicum spray and eventually had to Taser the man to get control of him. Two police were injured and had to be taken to hospital for treatment as a result of trying to arrest this man.“
Worboys would not confirm the number of times the man was hit with the Police Taser. The two officers taken to hospital were treated for minor head injuries and were released a short time later.
“It would have been a difficult situation inside that fast-food restaurant, and violence, and police doing their best to arrest that man. The critical investigation team will no doubt put all that together for us and that will be provided to myself and also the coroner in due course.“
The arrest itself was allegedly captured on McDonald’s CCTV cameras, and will form an integral part of the police investigation. An autopsy on the deceased man is due to be conducted in conjunction.
“It is indeed a tragic set of circumstances and our thoughts go out to his family and friends. Also, to the two police officers that find themselves injured and at home now recuperating.“
Police are urging anyone who may have witnessed the incident to come forward by contacting Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.