• Thu. Oct 22nd, 2020

Daniel Prude: Mayor suspends officers in ‘spit hood’ death

Daniel Prude Image copyright We The People/ GoFundMe
Image caption Daniel Prude died a week after he was restrained by police

Seven US police officers have been suspended over the death of an unarmed black man who suffocated after being restrained.

Daniel Prude, who had mental health issues, died after being put in a “spit hood”, a device meant to stop those arrested spitting on people.

Announcing the suspension Rochester’s mayor, Lovely Warren, said systemic racism led to the death.

Mr Prude died in March but his story has only just been made public.

The 41-year-old’s death came two months before George Floyd’s killing, which sparked national and international protests against racism and police brutality. His arrest also bore some similarities to Mr Floyd’s, as both were pinned to the ground by officers.

The move to suspend the seven officers is the first disciplinary action since Mr Prude’s death.

Mayor Warren said at a news conference on Thursday: “I am suspending the officers in question today against council’s advice, and I urge the attorney general to complete her investigation.”

“Daniel Prude was failed by our police department, our mental health care system, our society and, he was failed by me,” she said, adding that his death was proof “many of the challenges that we faced in the past are the same challenges that we face today”.