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Police say arrest death of naked man ruled 'accidental'

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posted on Jun, 29 2004 @ 05:07 PM
This story just screams police brutality! A naked 37yr old man, high on coc aine & alcohol, died when scuffling with 4 police officers in January. Two investigations concluded that the death was "accidental".


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.

Now I wasn't there but this one seems to a little on the shady side.
[edit on 29-6-2004 by JacKatMtn]

[edit on 29-6-2004 by JacKatMtn]

[edit on 30-6-2004 by John bull 1]

posted on Jun, 29 2004 @ 05:11 PM
How is that police brutality? Your quote even proves that. with contributing factors of acute alcohol and coc aine intoxication, a heart condition and mild obesity.

Had the guy not been high on a controlled substance with a heart condition (probably contributed by the use of coke), he would not have been in that position to begin with. That is not to say that if you get arrested, you should be treated poorly.

Also, it said he died from positional asphyxia. The guys was probably so high and drunk, he slipped into such a position and could not move himself.

Edit: After reading the story again, I recant my theory that he fell into such a position. I still however, still stand by my first thought that this is not police brutality because he was:

a. high on coke
b. drunk
c. mildly obese
d. most importantly, heart condition while on coke
e. trying to get away

[edit on 6-29-2004 by nyarlathotep]

posted on Jun, 29 2004 @ 05:14 PM
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.

posted on Jun, 29 2004 @ 05:17 PM
He could have got those injuries anytime during the time he was freaking naked and high on coke.

posted on Jun, 29 2004 @ 08:19 PM

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.

Having worked in an ER you have no idea how out of controll people can get when high or intoxicated. From self inflicted damage to fighting restraints etc. To lable it brutality without the facts is plain ignorance

posted on Jun, 29 2004 @ 08:36 PM
I agree with these last couple folks. He could have fallen out a window or off a balcony onto a fence and then went running down the street already banged up. The police just tried to hold him down and he went ballistic. With low blood oxygen level from his drugged condition, previous injuries, poor physical health, and extreme physical exertion due to running and fighting four policemen, it wouldn't take the normal 4 minutes of airway obstruction to cause death. It is just easy to blame the police because no one wants to take the responsibility for their own actions or accept that fact the someone was acting outside the acceptable limits of our civil society.

If this guy had instead run into the street and caused a driver to veer off the road and run over a family having a nice barbeque in the lawn and killed all of their kids, these same people would be sueing the police for not stopping him before this. Generally the police can never win.

posted on Jun, 29 2004 @ 09:15 PM
Since everyone is coming up with their own version of the story, I did some research and found the following articles which take us through the case.

Toxicology Report Awaited In Death Of Black Man On Central Avenue
Loses Consciousness After Officers Wrestle With Him
posted January 2, 2004

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. Praters 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.


Prater Family Claims Chattanooga Police Have Pattern Of Aggressive Force
posted January 13, 2004

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.


Leslie Vaughn Prater Family Says His Death Unnecessary
posted February 16, 2004

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.


Leslie Vaughn Prater Death Ruled Homicide
Naked Man In Police Custody Victim Of Positional Asphyxiation
posted March 26, 2004

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.


Now after reading these articles I would say there is a strong possibility that there was police brutality involved and covered up in this case.


[edit on 29-6-2004 by JacKatMtn]

posted on Jul, 8 2004 @ 12:26 PM
This happened in my hometown, and I know both the family of the victim and the attorney representing them. You should understand that this is merely the latest in a series of deaths of black men at the hands of local police. A nurse independently reviewed the autopsy report and agreed with the results of the autopsy: homicide. As she said, "I've seen out-of-control patients punch, bite, kick, and scratch nurses, but I have never once seen a nurse injure a patient. There are ways to control mental patients without killing them." I think that pretty much puts it in perspective. If the 5 officers and 1 neighbor at the scene were not trained in the safe restraint of mental patients, which Leslie obviously was, they should have called for someone who was properly trained. Remember, this was January 2, and Leslie was naked in the streets. He had a record of emotional problems. No, the officers could not have been expected to know about his medical record, but this is the perfect example of why you don't murder somebody who is out of control, on some assumption that they are high and deserve it, I guess. This was more a case of some officers being high on testosterone and adrenaline more than Leslie's being high on "coke." After all, he had been in the street yelling for hours before police finally responded to calls from neighbors, and in that time he had assaulted no one but was basically calling for help. There could have been any number of reasons for his odd behavior, none of which merited his being beaten to death.

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