Cleveland police officers recently killed a 37-year-old African American woman who died after police slammed her head on the concrete, just outside of her family’s home.
Her brother explained that Tanisha Anderson was pronounced dead at Cleveland Clinic after the assault by the Ohio cops. The pronouncement came early Thursday about two hours after the police “take down” caused Anderson to bash her head on the concrete outside of her home.
“They killed my sister,” Joell Anderson, Tanisha’s 40-year-old brother said as he fought back tears. “I watched it.”
Officers came to the house after a call from a family member who thought the police could calm the bi-polar Tanisha down, during an argument.
Police came, responding to the situation as a “disturbing the peace” call. It seemed that everyone agreed Tanisha should undergo an evaluation at St. Vincent Charity Medical Center, police sources told us.
But what happened next is described very differently by police and family members.
“As the officers escorted Anderson to the police vehicle, she began actively resisting the officers,” police spokesman Sgt. Ali Pillow claimed to the local Cleveland publication, The Plain Dealer.
Tanisha changed her mind about the evaluation after police slapped cuffs on her. She believed she was within her rights to decide whether she went for a voluntary evaluation. But police, at this point, argued that it was up to them.
“The woman began to kick at officers,” Pillow said. “A short time later the woman stopped struggling and appeared to go limp. Officers found a faint pulse on the victim and immediately called EMS.”
But Tanisha’s brother Joell gives a very different account than what the police claim.
“She was more of a danger to herself than others,” he explained.
Two male officers escorted Tanesha Anderson, who was prescribed medication for bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, to the police cruiser. She sat herself in the backseat but became nervous about the confined space and tried to get out, Anderson said.
As Tanisha called out for her brother and mother, an officer used a “Judo” take down move after having pressed her head down repeatedly in the backseat in what seemed to be a “smothering” manner, Joell Anderson said.
Joell says that after she hit her head on the concrete, and the officer placed his knee on her back, she never opened her eyes or spoke another word.
To add insult to injury, Joell says that his sister’s sundress was lifted above her waist, where it remained as officers refused to administer any aid to the unconscious woman. Joell says that he was forced to go over and use his own jacket to cover her naked lower body, because police would not, even when he asked them to.
“She was outgoing, silly, always joking,” Joell said of his sister. “She just wasn’t doing very well that day.”
The Cleveland Police Department tells us that their Division of Police Use of Deadly Force Investigation Team is “investigating” the case. No officers involved have been fired, reprimanded, nor placed on leave.