Tased Man Dies of Excited Delirium: Police

Thursday, Jun 17, 2010  |  Updated 3:45 PM PDT
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Tased Man Dies of Excited Delirium: Police

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LAS VEGAS - JANUARY 08: Taser International Inc. sales manager Doug Cote demonstrates the company's newly launched Taser C2 at the Venetian during the 2007 International Consumer Electronics Show January 8, 2007 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The new stun gun is smaller than earlier models and has a non-threatening grip, according to Stephen Tuttle, vice president of communications. Two models, one that will sell reportedly for USD 299 and one with a laser pointer feature and color options, USD 349, will be available in April 2007. The world's largest consumer technology tradeshow runs through January 11 and features 2,700 exhibitors showing off their latest products and services to more than 150,000 attendees. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

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 Vallejo police said this afternoon that the man who died after  police officers shot him with Tasers Tuesday appears to have died from  excited delirium, but the Solano County coroner's office has not officially  determined the cause of death.

     Police also said preliminary toxicology test results showed  Michael White, 47, had cocaine in his system "which may have contributed to  his medical issues."      Excited delirium has been attributed as a contributing factor in  the deaths of people who are under the influence of methamphetamine or  cocaine when they struggle with police, or are shot with Taser stun guns or  have underlying heart problems.
     The issue, however, remains controversial.
     Solano County Sheriff's Lt. Gary Faulkner said the coroner's  office has not determined the cause of death, which is pending toxicology  tests.
     Faulkner also said the coroner's office does not release  preliminary autopsy results. He said it's "reasonable" to consider excited  delirium as a cause of death, "but that's speculation."
     Two police officers shot White once with Tasers after he assaulted  a neighbor around 4:30 p.m. Tuesday at her mobile home in the Vallejo Mobile  Estates, Lt. Eric Mortenson said this afternoon.
     Police said White was delusional and irrational and refused to  comply with responding officers' directions.
     White became violent and struggled with officers and with fire and  medical personnel who were putting him on a gurney and in an ambulance,  police said.
     White was pronounced dead at Kaiser Permanente Vallejo Medical  Center at 5:22 p.m. Tuesday, the coroner's office said.
     Mortenson said White tried to choke the neighbor, was screaming,  waving his arms and sweating.
     Police found cocaine and a smoking pipe in White's bathroom,  Mortenson said. Based on White's behavior and the preliminary toxicology  results, police believe he was under the influence of a stimulant, Mortenson  said.
 

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