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Video: Cops Put Hood on Black Man. He Didn't Survive

Daniel Prude's family bring his death to the public eye
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Sep 2, 2020 6:25 PM CDT
Updated Sep 3, 2020 2:00 AM CDT

(Newser) – A Black man who had run naked through the streets of a western New York city died of asphyxiation after a group of police officers put a hood over his head, then pressed his face into the pavement for two minutes, according to video and records released Wednesday by the man's family, the AP reports. Daniel Prude died March 30 after he was taken off life support, seven days after the encounter with Rochester police. His death received no public attention until Wednesday, when his family released police body camera video and public reports they obtained through a public records request. "How did you see him and not directly say, 'The man is defenseless, buck naked on the ground. He's cuffed up already. Come on,'" said Prude's brother, Joe Prude, at a news conference Wednesday.

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The videos show Prude, who had taken off his clothes, complying when police ask him to get on the ground. Prude is agitated and shouting as officers let him writhe as he sits on the pavement in handcuffs for a few moments as a light snow falls. Then, they put a white "spit hood" over his head, a device intended to protect officers from a detainee's saliva. Prude demands they remove it. Then the officers slam Prude's head into the street and one says "stop spitting" as Prude’s shouts turn to whimpers and grunts. The officers appear to become concerned when they notice water coming out of Prude’s mouth. Prude stops moving and falls silent. A medical examiner concluded that Prude's death was a homicide caused by "complications of asphyxia in the setting of physical restraint."

(Read more police brutality stories.)

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