Sheriff’s officials and workers at a mental hospital in Virginia forcibly pinned down patient Irvo Otieno until he stopped moving and his body went limp, according to footage of the fatal encounter released Tuesday.
A video released by prosecutors that has charged seven deputies and three hospital employees with Otieno’s murder shows the 28-year-old man struggling under the weight of the bodies of several officials at Central State Hospital on March 6.
At one point, it appeared that at least ten people were pressing Otieno while he was tied up and lying on the floor, according to footage that does not include sound.
Around 4:00 p.m., he arrived at the hospital before another camera showed him being led into a room with tables and chairs around 4:20 p.m., according to time stamps on the video.
He is seated before he collapses to the floor.
At first he sits, but then lies flat.
And then he seems to start moving, which leads to more workers pinning him to the ground, as seen in the footage.
Around 4:40 p.m., someone took his pulse as he lay unconscious, and moments later, he was injected twice. Shortly thereafter, CPR began on his seemingly lifeless body, while other rescue efforts continued without much hope for about an hour.
By 5:48 p.m., his body was covered with a white sheet.
Commonwealth attorney Dinwiddie Ann Cabell Baskerville said in court on Tuesday that workers held him “from braids to toes.”
“He definitely didn’t deserve to be strangled, which is what happened,” Baskerville said.
Baskerville has claimed on several occasions that he died of asphyxiation, although the final autopsy report has yet to be released.
Defense lawyers argued that the injections helped lead to his death, but Baskerville argued that he was dead by the time the injections were given.
Seven deputies and three hospital workers were charged with second-degree murder.
On Tuesday, a grand jury confirmed the charges.
Lawyers representing many of the defendants said they planned to vigorously fight the charges.
Some lawyers tried to minimize their clients’ role in the incident, either in court or in an interview with The Associated Press on Tuesday.
The Baskerville documents, which included the release of the video footage, also found audio recordings of 911 calls related to the case.
One caller from the hospital said Otieno was “very aggressive” but stopped breathing when they tried to restrain him.
Other calls complain about the slow response of the ambulance service to help Otieno.
“These 10 monsters, these 10 criminals, I was happy to hear that they were charged,” Otieno’s mother, Caroline Ouko, said during a press conference on Tuesday. “And this is just the first step.
The investigation into the events leading up to Otieno’s death — both at the Henrico County hospital where he was taken and at the prison where his family said he was allegedly ill-treated — is ongoing, Henrico County prosecutors said.
With mail wires