Taser Used on Man Who Died in New London Police Custody

Connecticut state police are investigating the death of a medical school graduate who died in New London police custody after officers used a Taser on him twice in the span of eight hours.

Lashano Gilbert, 31, who The Associated Press reports was a medical school graduate from the Bahamas, died early Saturday morning, hours after being arrested on suspicion of carjacking.

Police say they shot him twice with a stun gun, once when he resisted arrest and again when he attacked officers at the police station hours later.

The chief medical examiner examined his body Sunday to determine the cause of death.

Gilbert was initially taken into custody just after 7 p.m. Friday on carjacking charges, after police say he jumped through the open window of a woman's car while she was driving.

Police said that he made stabbing motions toward the driver, appeared to be in an "altered state of mind" and was "speaking in a bizarre manner." The woman called 911 and "floored" the car to "get him off of her," police said.

When police arrived, Gilbert resisted arrest, telling them he was hearing voices, yelling at them and acting aggressively, police said. Officers used a Taser to subdue him.

Gilbert was taken by ambulance to a local hospital for treatment and was brought to the police station around 3 a.m. Saturday.

Police say that while in his holding cell, Gilbert removed his pants and began twisting them, as if to make a rope. Police say they opened the door to take the pants away, fearing he might hurt himself.

Gilbert then rushed the door and escaped into the common booking area, where he threw objects, including an intoximeter, at officers, and a struggle ensued, according to police. An officer ended that struggle by using a Taser on him again.

Gilbert became unresponsive while he was in an ambulance en route to Lawrence + Memorial Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 3:23 a.m. Saturday.

Half an hour after Gilbert's death, the New London state's attorney and New London police chief asked the State Police Eastern District Major Crime Squad respond to investigate Gilbert's death.

State police gathered evidence from the scene and conducted interviews, and the case remains under investigation.

Three New London police officers were also transported to the hospital for injuries and later released.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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