Man dies in police custody in Norfolk

Posted at 8:08 PM, Apr 04, 2012
and last updated 2012-04-04 21:33:28-04

NORFOLK, Va (WTKR)- A man doused with pepper spray passed out in a Norfolk police cruiser and later died at the hospital. Police say they do not know why the man died.

It was around 5 o'clock Tuesday evening when police were sent to Lincoln Military Housing off Diven Street. According to a police statement, they found a man who they thought might have been on drugs.

They said the man was incoherent and vomiting, but he fought with police and paramedics. Police pepper sprayed him, restrained his hands and arms and put him sitting upright in a police car. Police say he passed out, paramedics then tried to help him and he died at the hospital.

Police say they had planned to take him to Sentara Norfolk General for medical treatment, but diverted to DePaul when the man lost consciousness.

Police have not released the man's name. They say they are still trying to contact his family.

The officer who was handling him has been placed on administrative duties, but police say that is routine in cases where someone dies in custody.