Oklahoma City police released body-camera footage of an armed black man on meth who died in police custody last year after telling the arresting officers “I can’t breathe,” a phrase often heard at George Floyd protests.
The armed man was 42-year-old Derrick Elliot Scott, a suspect that police were pursuing allegedly for waving around a gun. In the video, Scott can be heard telling officers he couldn’t breathe as at least one officer sat on him in an attempt to place him in handcuffs. One of the officers is then heard telling Scott “stop resisting.” You can also hear one of the officers respond “I don’t care,” to Scott pleading for help. After he’s handcuffed, Scott appeared to go in and out of consciousness according to the paramedics. Scott was then placed on a gurney and transported to a nearby hospital, where he was later pronounced dead.
At one point in the video, you can hear Scott telling officers “I need my medicine, I need my medicine” as he begs them to give him his inhaler which is seen next to him.
The video released today is scarily similar to a video showing George Floyd’s death last month in Minneapolis police custody, which has ignited protests across the U.S. The only difference is Floyd, a black man was unarmed and handcuffed as a white officer Derek Chauvin pressed his knee on his neck, while other officers watched or aided in Floyd’s murder.
As police officers approached Scott, the video shows the man runs away before one officer tackles him to the ground. The officers then struggled to handcuff him as Scott complained he couldn’t breathe.
Scott was asthmatic and required an inhaler, an autopsy also indicated that he was on meth at the time of his death.
The autopsy report further listed probable causes of death as a — collapsed lung, physical restraint, emphysema, and heart disease. However, according to Oklahoma 4, Scott’s cause of death was ultimately ruled undetermined.
The Oklahoma videos were released following a demand from the Oklahoma City Black Lives Matter group and requests from several media outlets, said Oklahoma City Police Capt. Larry Withrow.
An Oklahoma Black Lives Matter spokesperson, Rev. T. Sherri Dickerson said the situation doesn’t matter Scott was already handcuffed and in custody, stating that denying him his medicine means that “you are not a person acknowledging someone else in crisis.” She added, “you are sworn to protect and serve, I certainly hope that they don’t think even in the heat of the moment situations its permissible or okay to end up deceased.”
No officers have been charged in the killing of Scott at the time of this report.
Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater cleared all of the officers involved last year after receiving a copy of the autopsy report, US News reported.
“This guy runs from the police. He’s got a 90% occluded major artery in his heart,” Prater told The Associated Press in a telephone interview. “I mean, he’s just a perfect candidate to die when you’ve got meth in your system and those kinds of physical ailments and then you fight with police. They (officers) didn’t do anything wrong at all.”
You can watch the disturbing video below.