State police are investigating the death of a 41-year-old Branford man who police used a stun gun on while investigating a disturbance at his home on Sunday night.
David Werblow, 41, of 134 Burban Dr. in Branford, was leaving his house when Branford police arrived at 7:45 p.m. on Sunday to investigate a report of a disturbance at his residence, police said.
Police asked Werblow, who was walking down the street, to stop, but he kept going and tried to get into several cars driving by, according to police.
Responding officers waved drivers to keep going rather than stop for Werblow, but then he got into a parked car on Burban Drive, police said. It's unclear who the car belonged to and whether it was his.
Weblow ignored police requests for him to get out of the car, so a Branford officer used a stun gun on him, according to police.
As officers got Werblow out of the car and handcuffed him, they noticed he was in "medical distress," so EMS crews were called to take him to Yale-New Haven Hospital where he was pronounced dead, police said.
The office of the chief medical examiner will examine the body to determine the cause of Weblow's death and the manner in which he died, state police said. It's undetermined at this time if the stun gun was a factor.
Branford Chief Kevin Halloran and the New Haven state's attorney's office called upon the State Police Central District Major Crime Squad to investigate the use of force in the stun gun incident, per protocol, police said.
“We take every use of force by our Officers very seriously; especially those that result in injury or, in those unusual cases, a loss of life," Halloran said. "We realize that Conducted Electronic Weapons (Taser) are classified as a less than lethal weapon; however also realize their use can result in death and do not deploy them indiscriminately.”
The American Civil Liberties Union of Connecticut released the following statement upon getting word on the Branford case.
“While we do not have any details on the incident in Branford, the American Civil Liberties Union of Connecticut believes this episode reinforces the need for oversight mechanisms associated with Tasers. Stun guns have been linked to the deaths of people throughout Connecticut and we simply don’t have the tools to ensure their use was called for under the circumstances," David McGuire, staff attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union of Connecticut, said in a statement. "Taser-cams should be required to verify as conclusively as possible that the use of a stun gun was absolutely necessary. The ACLU of Connecticut will be seeking any available video and documentary evidence on the incident as well as other accounts of what happened.”
Police haven't released any information how many officers were involved in the incident or the identities of the police at the scene.
State police continue to investigate the call that resulted in Werblow's death.
Neighbors home at the time of the incident reported a chaotic scene.
"I was actually at work and I got a call from my boyfriend and my daughter, saying that there was some guy on the ground in the driveway," Allison Spinazzola said.