Tulsa police released a video showing officers repeatedly tasering a black suspect, who showed impressive resistance to electric shock. The man never regained consciousness in the hospital and died three days later.
The footage shows the altercation between 25-year-old Joshua Harvey and the officers on August 24 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The man was screaming and removing his clothes in the street, according to police statement.
Things escalated when Harvey tried to break into an office building housing Arvest Bank. As the officers approached the individual, who looked actively disturbed, he pulled the glass doors of the building so hard that it shattered. Injured by the broken glass, he ran inside the bank, where officers caught up with him.
“All right we’re gonna tase him. Let’s tase him,” a police officer is heard telling his colleagues just before a group of cops gang up on the unruly half-naked black male.
“Two officers deployed their Tasers with additional officers there to assist. The Taser knocked the individual down but he quickly got back up,” Tulsa PD said in a statement.
In the video, the officers are heard ordering the suspect to “get on the ground, put your hands behind your back.” As the suspect refuses to “roll over” and tries to run, he is repeatedly tasered back to the ground. Throughout much of the time, Harvey is heard screaming incoherently. The tasering continues even after the cops manage to secure one of the man’s hands. “He hasn’t done anything yet, he’s just acting crazy,” one officer is heard saying to another.
Once the officers have one of the handcuffs on, they tell the suspect to “relax, roll over,” as they complete Harvey’s arrest. The strength displayed by the suspect during the arrest matched that of four police officers, authorities said.
“He was tased again and went down again the officers attempted to get him into custody but his strength was matching the strength of the 4 officers,” Tulsa PD said. At the end of the video one officer asked: “How many times did we hit him, like 10 frickin’ times?”
After securing the suspect, the officers called in the Emergency Medical Services Authority (EMSA). According to police, the suspect was still conscious when paramedics arrived at the scene. However, he died at St. John Medical Center on August 27, just two days shy of his 26th birthday. Authorities are still waiting for the autopsy report to determine the exact cause of death.
The man’s attorney Damario Solomon-Simmons insists that Harvey never regained consciousness in hospital. “At this point we just want to know exactly what happened between Joshua and the TPD officers, and call on TPD to be forthcoming and transparent during this process,” Solomon-Simmons said.