Months before George Floyd died in police custody, a 41-year-old Black man suffered a similar fate.
On Wednesday, the Rochester Police Department in New York released bodycam footage of a March 23 incident involving Chicago resident Daniel Prude. According to Oregon Live, the man was in Rochester visiting family when his brother reported to police that his brother was experiencing mental issues. Officers found Prude naked in the middle of the street before handcuffing him and covering his head with a "spit hood"—a controversial restrain device that purportedly protects officers from a detainee's bites and spits.
The footage shows officers pinning Prude facedown on the pavement. Although the man reportedly told police to remove the hood from his head, the officers ignored his calls and whimpers, and continued to hold him down for more than 2 minutes. Oregon Live reports officers became concerned once they saw water coming out of Prude's mouth. The man is then silent moments later.
A medic arrived shortly after and performed CPR on Prude before he was placed into an ambulance. He was then transferred to a hospital and remained on life support throughout the following week. Prude died on March 30.
The Monroe County Medical Examiner ruled Prude's death a homicide caused by "complications of asphyxia in the setting of physical restraint." A toxicology test also reportedly found low levels of PCP in Prude's blood system.
"I placed a phone call for my brother to get help. Not for my brother to get lynched," Prude’s brother, Joe Prude, said at a Wednesday news conference, as reported by the Associated Press. "How did you see him and not directly say, 'The man is defenseless, buck naked on the ground. He's cuffed up already. Come on.’'How many more brothers gotta die for society to understand that this needs to stop?"
Prude's family are now demanding the involved officers to be fired and charged. State Attorney General Letitia James confirmed the case was being investigated.
"The death of Daniel Prude was a tragedy, and I extend my deepest condolences to his family," James said in a statement. "I share the community’s concerns about ensuring a fair and independent investigation into his death and support their right to protest. Pursuant to Executive Order 147, the Special Investigations and Prosecutions Unit of my office is already actively investigating this incident. As with every investigation, we will follow the facts of this case and ensure a complete and thorough examination of all relevant parties. We will work tirelessly to provide the transparency and accountability that all our communities deserve."
According to CBS Chicago, the involved officers have not been suspended.