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A medical examiner's report released in April said Leslie Prater died from "positional asphyxia," with contributing factors of acute alcohol and coc aine intoxication, a heart condition and mild obesity.
In addition to multiple fractured ribs and a dislocated shoulder joint with a fracture, the 5-foot-11, 232-pound Prater suffered multiple abrasions and "acute hemorrhage of the pubic and lower abdominal wall soft tissues and scrotal sac, consistent with blunt trauma impact," according to the report.
Originally posted by JacKatMtn
Four police officers, one naked man, and your telling me that they had to fracture his shoulder, assault his groin with a blunt weapon and then position him so he choked to death? I don't buy this at all.
Police were first called around 6:47 by someone complaining of a naked man in the streets. According to the caller, Mr. Prater parked his car, got out, stripped, and began running around the area, yelling.
"Less than 10 minutes later, officers arrived and made contact with Mr. Prater, then attempted to take him into custody for further investigation.
"Officers retrieved Mr. Prater’s pants and asked him to put them on. He refused to be cooperative and resisted being taken into custody.
"Two officers did use pepper spray on Mr. Prater, but to no effect.
"During the scuffle, officers made the decision to call for an
ambulance to respond to the scene. This was before Mr. Prater lost
consciousness. I commend the officers for their foresight.
"The decision to call the ambulance was due to the fact that something was obviously wrong with Mr. Prater, from either a medical or mental standpoint.
Four officers have been placed on paid administrative leave in the case. Police initially said there were three white officers involved.
Police first said our son was believed to be over six feet tall and weighed over 300 pounds. He is actually 5'11" and weighed approximately 230 pounds.
Chief Jimmie Dotson said at the January 3, 2004 press conference that:
"The investigation into the death of 37-year-old Leslie Vaughn Prater is still in the early stages.
John Wolfe, attorney for the Prater family, said a state autopsy found that asphyxiation contributed to the death of the 37-year-old man on Central Avenue on Jan. 2.
He said the autopsy by state medical examiner Dr. Bruce Levy showed the victim had six broken ribs and a broken left arm.
Police said they responded to a report of a naked man out in the street, and they said they had to restrain Mr. Prater.
The death of a black man in the custody of four white Chattanooga Police officers has been ruled a homicide in an autopsy report from the Hamilton County Medical Examiner.
Dr. Frank King said Leslie Vaughn Prater died from positional asphyxiation. He said he had numerous bruises and abrasions, broken ribs, a dislocated left arm, a fractured left shoulder and bruisers to the scrotial wall.