Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren announced in a news conference late Thursday afternoon that Mr. (Daniel) Prude lost his life in our city. He lost his life because of the actions of our police officers.”
The Mayor also announced that seven city police officers have been suspended due to their involvement in the March arrest of a Black man who was pinned to the ground and later died.
“Mr. (Daniel) Prude lost his life in our city. He lost his life because of the actions of our police officers,” Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren said Thursday in a news conference.
The Mayor also rebuked Police Chief La’Ron Singletary for his handling of the case, including a failure to inform her of the full details of the March 23 incident until early August. The steps came hours after members of City Council sent her a letter calling for stronger actions in response to Prude’s death.
The suspensions come a day after attorneys for Prude’s family released police bodycam video that shows officers covering the man’s head with a “spit sock” and holding him on the ground in a prone position before he stopped breathing.
The officers suspended are Troy Talladay, Paul Ricotta, Francisco Santiago, Andrew Specksgoor, Josiah Harris, Mark Vaughn and Sgt. Mark Magri.
Prude, 41, was having a mental health episode on March 23 when his brother Joe called the Rochester Police Department for help, the family said at a press conference Wednesday.
The video provided by attorneys shows officers handcuff Prude, who was naked, in the middle of a snowy wet street, and place a covering over his head. Several minutes later, EMTs arrive and begin to perform chest compressions, the video shows. He is then placed on a gurney and into an ambulance. When Prude arrived at the hospital, he was brain dead, his brother said. He died a week later.
His death was ruled a homicide by the Monroe County Medical examiner, according to a copy of the autopsy report obtained by lawyers for his family. Speaking at the Wednesday press conference, Joe Prude said police had killed a defenseless Black man and called his brother’s death “cold-blooded murder.”
Elliot Shields, one of the Prude family lawyers, said attorneys are in the preliminary stages of filing a wrongful death suit.