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El Paso police release body camera videos of arrest of man who died in police custody

El Paso police launched body camera footage of a wrestle between officers and a man who later died at a hospital.

The body camera videos exhibits the interplay between a number of police officers and Jonathan Rose Eddens, 35, of El Paso, about 3:16 p.m. Sunday, April 14, when officers responded to a report of a man walking in and out of traffic in the realm of Alameda Avenue and San Marcial Street in South El Paso.

El Paso Police Department officials released body camera videos of an April 14, 2024, confrontation between officers and Jonathan Rose Eddens, 35. Eddens died at a hospital while in police custody after his arrest.El Paso Police Department officials released body camera videos of an April 14, 2024, confrontation between officers and Jonathan Rose Eddens, 35. Eddens died at a hospital while in police custody after his arrest.

El Paso Police Department officers launched body camera videos of an April 14, 2024, confrontation between officers and Jonathan Rose Eddens, 35. Eddens died at a hospital whereas in police custody after his arrest.

The video is about 14 minutes long and consists of an introduction by a police spokesperson, Officer Adrian Cisneros, discussing how police body cameras work and one other spokesperson, Det. Judy Oviedo, offering particulars in regards to the incident. The footage is from two body cameras worn by officers on the scene.

“The officers observed the individual had injuries to his face and was bleeding,” Oviedo mentioned in the video. “The officers attempted to make contact with the subject and called for fire medical services. The subject evaded from officers on foot East on Alameda.

After a foot pursuit and multiple requests for the man to stop, the man struggled with officers. Eddens was eventually downed with a taser, swarmed by officers who struggled to handcuff him.

The body camera footage was released as part of a “neighborhood temporary” outreach effort by the police department to be transparent with the community and build trust with the public, El Paso Police Department spokesperson Robert Gomez said at a news conference Friday.

These (neighborhood temporary) are a very long time in the making,” Gomez said. “This began years in the past with (former police) Chief (Greg) Allen, and we have been making an attempt to develop a manner of informing the general public well timed (and) precisely, and to provide the general public a snapshot or a view of what officers are doing out in the streets. It wasn’t till we obtained body cam footage that we had been in a position to inform a correct story and provides the right reference to the neighborhood. Hence, you are seeing the outcomes of these efforts.”

Gomez said the department will continue releasing the “neighborhood temporary” on incidents involving police use of force to “give the neighborhood context, to be clear and to have the neighborhood see firsthand what these incidents are all about.”

‘Take a seat or I am going to tase you’

The initial body camera video is from the first officer to arrive at the scene attempting to talk to Eddens. As soon as the officer gets out of his patrol vehicle, Eddens runs away from the officer.

The officer calls on his radio for emergency medical personnel. The officer said in the call that Eddens was bleeding from the face. It is hard to tell from the video if Eddens is bleeding at that moment.

Eddens is walking in the middle of the street when the officer asks him to come to him.

“Come right here, sir,” the officer, whose name was not released, states. “Come right here. What occurred to your face?”

El Paso Police Department officials released body camera videos of an April 14, 2024, confrontation between officers and Jonathan Rose Eddens, 35. Eddens died at a hospital while in police custody after his arrest.El Paso Police Department officials released body camera videos of an April 14, 2024, confrontation between officers and Jonathan Rose Eddens, 35. Eddens died at a hospital while in police custody after his arrest.

El Paso Police Department officials released body camera videos of an April 14, 2024, confrontation between officers and Jonathan Rose Eddens, 35. Eddens died at a hospital while in police custody after his arrest.

The officer asks Eddens to stop walking so he can check on him. Eddens refuses to stop and continues walking away from police as he incoherently talks.

Another officer shouts, “We are going to do nothing. We need to see your face.” The initial officer asks, “Why are you bleeding? Did one thing occur to you?”

Eddens continues to walk on the roadway. He appears to ask the officers, “are y’all going to shoot me?” The second officer response, “No, we aren’t going to shoot you. Come right here.”

The officers repeatedly ask Eddens to stop and what happened to his face. Edens continues to walk backwards away from the officers as he enters the roadway and back onto the sidewalk.

Eventually, Eddens stops near a building and the officers are able to get within five to 10 feet of him.

They repeatedly ask him to stop and sit down. “Just have a sit proper there. Have a seat. Do you need an ambulance to come back examine you out?”

Eddens says no he doesn’t want an ambulance to check on him. The officer replies, “The ambulance is already coming.” Eddens says “I’m good.”

More: El Paso man who died in police custody after struggle on Alameda Avenue identified

“No sir. You are bleeding quite a bit,” the officer says. It is still unclear from the video if Eddens is bleeding from the face.

Eddens then begins jogging away from the officers. The officers continue to follow him. The initial officer, sounding frustrated, tell Eddens, “Sir, come right here.”

Eddens continues to slowly jog away from the officers and appears to try to enter the roadway again when an officer arrives in a patrol unit and blocks the road.

Eddens appears to say “that is how I used to be born.” The officer tells Eddens, “Take a seat or I’m going to tase you.” The officer pleads with Eddens, “Take a seat. Just sit down.”

Eddens says, “Why you doing this to a black man?” The officer replies, “We aren’t. Just sit down.”

Another officer arrived and then parked his patrol vehicle to block Eddens from running away.

Officer claims Eddens said he would stab the officers

The video then switches to the third officer’s body camera. The officer gets out of his vehicle and approaches Eddens.

Eddens appears to say, “If I cease y’all are going to kill me.”

The third officer tells the initial officer, “Watch out. He mentioned, ‘If you get close to me, I’m going to stab you.'” It is unclear in the video if Eddens said that.

El Paso Police Department officials released body camera videos of an April 14, 2024, confrontation between officers and Jonathan Rose Eddens, 35. Eddens died at a hospital while in police custody after his arrest.El Paso Police Department officials released body camera videos of an April 14, 2024, confrontation between officers and Jonathan Rose Eddens, 35. Eddens died at a hospital while in police custody after his arrest.

El Paso Police Department officials released body camera videos of an April 14, 2024, confrontation between officers and Jonathan Rose Eddens, 35. Eddens died at a hospital while in police custody after his arrest.

Eddens continues to walk away saying, “I’ve no gun.” The officers continue to tell Eddens to have a seat.

“All proper. All proper,” Eddens says as he takes a knee. However, he gets back up and jogs away from the officers.

The footage shows the third officer has his taser pulled out. “Have a seat. I’m going to tase you, man,” the third officer says.

The officers now are less than five feet away from Eddens who is yelling “Jesus.” He tells the officers, “All proper.” He puts his hands up and takes a knee. He then moves his hands out toward the officer. Eddens is not holding anything in his hands.

The officer points the taser at the Eddens. Another officer then grabs Eddens and other officers join in. Eddens then begins to fight off the officers, including kicking the officers.

Eddens gets back on his feet but is tackled to the ground by officers. Eddens yells, “Jesus. Thank you Jesus” as the officers attempt to put handcuffs on him.

More: Man’s death after arrest by El Paso police under investigation

He continues to kick and struggle with the officers. There are at least four officers seen in the video at this point. Eddens gets back on his feet and runs away from the officer. Officers discharge several tasers at Eddens. One of the shots hits Eddens on the side of his body.

Eddens falls to the ground and three officers attempt to handcuff him again. Eddens says, “Okay. I’ll cease. I’m carried out.” However, he continues to struggle with officers as they attempt to handcuff him.

The video shows Eddens with blood pouring down his face as he repeatedly yells, “Jesus!” He continues to struggle with officers. An officer tells him, “Turn the (expletive) round.” Eddens is then tased again. “Jesus Christ gained,” Eddens yells.

An officer briefly puts his foot on the back of Eddens’ neck. “Watch out. He is all full of blood,” an officer tells the other officers. One officer pushes Eddens’ face into the ground.

Officers appear to punch Eddens more than six times in the back and on the back of his neck. Eddens continues to struggle with the officers.

El Paso Police Department officials released body camera videos of an April 14, 2024, confrontation between officers and Jonathan Rose Eddens, 35. Eddens died at a hospital while in police custody after his arrest.El Paso Police Department officials released body camera videos of an April 14, 2024, confrontation between officers and Jonathan Rose Eddens, 35. Eddens died at a hospital while in police custody after his arrest.

El Paso Police Department officials released body camera videos of an April 14, 2024, confrontation between officers and Jonathan Rose Eddens, 35. Eddens died at a hospital while in police custody after his arrest.

An officer appears to kick Eddens in the face before another officer blocks the officer from kicking him again. Blood marks are seen on the sidewalk, but it unclear if it is from the original injury Eddens had or another injury during the struggle with officers.

Officers are eventually able to put Eddens in handcuffs. Eddens is then heard apologizing. He continues to talk but it is inaudible. An ambulance and fire truck arrive at the scene.

Eddens tells officers, “I surrender. I’m sorry. Please. Please. Enough.” The officers tell Eddens, “Relax. Relax. Calm down, sir. It’s over, sir. It’s over.” Eddens continues to scream and yell “Jesus!” An officer tell Eddens, “We are going that will help you, however it’s a must to calm down.”

A medic asks Eddens, “What did you’re taking? What did you’re taking?” He then says Eddens’ pupils are “blown.” They asks Eddens what his name is. He replies, “Jonathan.” They ask him for his last name and he replies, “Jesus Christ.” Eddens continues talking but it is inaudible.

Eddens is picked up off the ground by officers and put in a stretcher. As Eddens is being strapped to the stretcher, he tells officers, “Jesus is actual.” An officer replies, “sure, he’s.” Eddens goes back to yelling, “Jesus!”

The body camera footage ends there.

Eddens was taken to a University Medical Center, where he later died. The cause of death has yet to be released.

What we know about the officers involved

The names of the officers involved in the incident have not been released. Police officials said eight officers from the police department’s Central Regional Command responded to the incident.

Here is a list of officers involved in the incident and identified solely by their years of experience with the department:

  • An officer with the department for four year

  • Two officers with the department for two years

  • An officer with the department for eight years

  • An officer with the department for seven years

  • Two officer with the department for 11 months

  • An officer with the department for eight months

The incident is being investigated by the El Paso Police Department’s Crimes Against Person unit and the Texas Rangers, Oviedo said. An administrative investigation is being conducted by the El Paso Police Department’s Internal Affairs Division.

“Conclusions about whether or not the officer’s actions are per the regulation and the division’s insurance policies won’t be made till all info are recognized and the investigation is full,” Oviedo mentioned.

Aaron Martinez could also be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @AMartinezEPT.

This article initially appeared on El Paso Times: El Paso police release arrest videos in death of man in police custody

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