George Salgado of Miami, Florida died on Friday after police subdued him with what his family describes as undue violence, according to reports. The 21-year-old was battered and bloody and showed evidence of head injuries, his family said. It is not clear whether the Salgados plan on hiring a personal injury lawyer or filing a lawsuit against the Miami-Dade Police department regarding the incident.
According to police reports, Miami-Dade officials received a 911 call regarding Salgado on Friday, when an unidentified man called in saying that Salgado was acting erratic and was naked and had tried to rip his clothes off and bite his neck. Sources indicate that Salgado was under the influence of an unidentified recreational drug at the time of the incident. It is not clear whether Salgado and the alleged victim knew each other or what the circumstances behind the situation were.
Police responded to the call by going to the 2300 block of Southwest 58 Avenue, where they reportedly found Salgado acting as described. A Miami-Dade spokesperson reported that Salgado “became aggressive and violent towards the officers and they utilized their Electronic Control Device,” in response. However, the spokesperson did not mention any other physical restraint used against Salgado. The names of the responding officers have not been released, and it is not clear how many officers were involved in the altercation.
Salgado’s family, on the other hand, released photos of George Salgado in a hospital bed with obvious injuries to his face and head. They also reported that Salgado’s body was bruised, his wrists were covered in cuts and he had welts on his head consistent with being violently beaten. The Salgado family also said that George was unarmed at the time of the incident, which is consistent with the police report.
Salgado died a few hours after being transported to the hospital after his arrest. The cause of his death is not yet known; possible causes include the recreational drug he was on, the effects of the Taser, or effects from the alleged beating. The unidentified drug that Salgado had taken may have slowed his response to the Taser devices, according to some reports, causing the officers to take additional action in order to subdue him. However, this was not acknowledged by the police report.
Salgado’s mother, Barbara Alfaro, told the press that her son had just gotten certified as a personal trainer. “He had a lot of plans. He was a very smart kid. He was looking forward to just getting his education going and having a future,” she told the press. Funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.
In response to the claims, a Miami-Dade spokesperson said, “nobody better than us wants to give them answers. We know what pain and anguish they have to be in. But we owe it to them and they will appreciate it at the end when we are able to clarify and bring to light everything that occurred.” An internal investigation into the incident is underway. It is not clear whether the officers involved in the incident are still on duty.