FAIRFAX, Va. (DC News Now) — One month after a Virginia man died in police custody, Fairfax County police just released body camera video showing officers trying to help him.
Police Chief Kevin Davis thinks the man who died might have had something in his system that night, although there is no evidence right now to back that up.
Even though he died, the officers and a FedEx driver are being praised for their work.
When police showed up at Amherst Avenue in Springfield on November 10, body camera video just released shows 44-year-old Temiki Murray acting disorderly, running into traffic and blocking the southbound lanes.
“Certainly his behavior was erratic and unusual and dangerous not only to himself but to motorists and passer buyers and the police officers,” Davis said.
The video shows him running off to a nearby parking lot where police didn’t immediately approach him.
“We got a FedEx driver here that’s got some good rapport with him. I’m gonna wait til another officer gets here,” Davis said.
FedEx driver Douglas Kennebo helped calm Murray down.
“Regardless of the outcome, his actions were heroic,” Davis said.
Davis says their training paid off.
“We want to get you help. You’re not in trouble. But I want to detain you because I don’t want you running away, OK,” the officer in the video is heard saying.
“The words that Fairfax County police officers are trained to use when they deescalate circumstances just like this one include we’re here to help. You’re not in trouble.”
Police actually arrested Murray the day before on Nov. 9 for public drunkness. On Nov. 10 you can see Murray out of sorts on the pavement, apparently struggling to breathe before being put into handcuffs.
“The fact that he was temporarily restrained with handcuffs is consistent with our policy,” Davis said. “It’s consistent with best practices and keeps him safe. And it keeps the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue folks safe.”
In the ambulance, Murray suffered a medical emergency and was given CPR but pronounced dead at the hospital.
“Sometimes the outcome is tragic, and Mr. Murray, no longer being with us, we wish that weren’t the case,” Davis said.
Davis said Murray had an enlarged heart but toxicology results still have not come back to give a clearer picture as to what happened.