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Autopsy shows man who died in IMPD custody did not suffer trauma, cause of death pending toxicology

Officers involved placed on administrative leave
Posted at 8:10 PM, Sep 04, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-04 20:10:54-04

INDIANAPOLIS – The cause of death for a man who died in police custody over the weekend is still undetermined as the coroner's office awaits toxicology results. 

Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officers arrested Paul Daniels just after 11 a.m. Sunday while performing a welfare check on Cooper Road. 

When police arrived they found Daniels walking in and out of traffic. When they attempted to talk to him he became combative and struck an officer in the face, breaking his glasses. 

READ | Man dies following welfare check, arrest by IMPD

Once officers were able to take Daniels into custody, they used handcuffs and leg restraints and placed him upright in the back of the cruiser, where he began to have breathing problems. 

Officers called for medical assistance, but Daniels passed away while being treated by paramedics. 

An autopsy was performed Tuesday, which determined there was no blunt force trauma or signs of asphyxiation to Daniels. His official cause of death is pending toxicology results. 

The three officers involved in Daniels' arrest have been placed on administrative leave, as is standard practice, and will be provided with coping services. 

In Custody Death Investigation Timeline

(Provided by IMPD)

  • 11:09 a.m. - Anonymous caller reported seeing an “older male wearing, all read, walking in the street stumbling.  
  • 11:10 a.m. - Officers #1 and Officer #2 were dispatched on a Check the Welfare Run at 5800 Cooper Rd. Officers were given the description of an “older, black male, all red, walking in the street stumbling around.”
  • 11:15 a.m. - Officer #1 marks himself on the scene by using his in-car laptop.
  • 11:17 a.m. - Officer #1 changes his mark out location to 5700 Cooper Road through communications.
    • Witness stated that she observed the officer in the street with the decedent.  The witness goes on to say that the victim was “combative”.  
  • 11:20 a.m.- Officer #1 broadcasts over the radio that he has a mild resistor
    • Witness stated that she observed the Officer #1 attempt to handcuff the decedent after they were out of the street.
    • Witness said that she observed the decedent with one armed handcuffed and the other was flaying.  She went on to say that once on the ground, the decedent continued to kick at officer #1.
    • The witness left the scene as Officer #3 was arriving.
  • 11:20 a.m. - Officer #2 backs on the run to assist
  • 11:21 a.m. - Supervisor #1 backs on to the run.
  • 11:22 a.m. - Officer #2 arrives on scene
  • 11:28 a.m. - Indianapolis Emergency Services (IEMS) dispatched to the scene.
  • 11:31 a.m. - EMS arrived and began rendering aid
  • 11:42 a.m.-  Medics attempting lifesaving procedures.
  • 11:42 a.m. - Homicide Investigators are notified and requested to call the on-scene supervisor.
  • 12:07 a.m.  -Daniels was pronounced by medics.
  • 12:29 a.m. - A Missing Persons Run was called into communications. 

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