Man Can’t Breathe; Dies in Police Custody while “Hog-Tied”

A white chemical engineer who complained about his asthma could not survive police custody.

“I can’t breathe” were the famous last words of Eric Garner before he died when police laid hands on him. There are a lot of questions and accusations about Garner’s death.

Now, in a Memphis suburb, a white chemical engineer also complained that he couldn’t breathe while in police custody.

KSDK.com reported, “

A Memphis man died in police custody in Southaven Saturday night after reportedly being hogtied and telling officers he was having trouble breathing due to asthma.

Troy Goode, 30, of Memphis, died at Baptist Memorial Hospital in DeSoto, Miss., Saturday night, two hours after being detained by the Southaven Police Department, according to Tim Edwards, an attorney for Goode’s family.

Goode and his wife attended a Widespread Panic concert in Southaven Saturday night. Goode was intoxicated, Edwards said, and the couple left the event.

According to Edwards, while Goode’s wife was driving, Goode “unexpectedly” exited the vehicle and began acting “erratically.”

“There was not any violent conduct,” Edwards said, “just erratic.”

An unknown passerby called police. When police arrived on scene, they took Goode into custody, hogtying him and placing him face down on a stretcher, Edwards said.

Goode, who had asthma, reportedly told police he was having trouble breathing throughout the incident.

Chief Tom Long of the Southaven Police Department said when his officers arrived on scene, they were told Goode was having an “alleged LSD overdose.”

“The officers on scene and ambulance personnel and hospital personnel felt like the information of the alleged overdose fit the protocol that they were seeing of his actions,” Long said.

This is a local news story. As far as I know it has not been picked up by the national news. No one is screaming about police abuse or negligence.

I can’t help but wonder how this story would play if the races had been different. Is it not possible that incidents that are being construed as racism or bias by the mainstream media are simply part of a larger issue that affects all races?

I don’t know if the police are at fault in this case or not. But it is worth pointing out that, if the media publicizes only stories involving one race and does not publicize stories involving other races, they can create a completely false impression.

David McLaughlin, a Memphis attorney, happened to witness the event.

“Paramedics arrived on scene, and I see them put him in a four-point restraint or hogtie, I don’t know how else to describe it,” McLaughlin said. “His legs were crossed, pulled back, by my vantage point, his hands were pulled back, and I think affixed to at least one of his legs,” McLaughlin said. “He looked to me like he was struggling or convulsing or both. He appeared to be in distress to me.”

McLaughlin’s son, Brady McLaughlin, began recording the incident.

Note, I have no idea what is the real story here yet. I’m not making accusations against anyone. I am simply asking why, as we all know, this story would get a lot more play in the media if the victim had been a racial minority. Is it possible that we are misled by such media reporting tendencies?