A father of five died after a deputy tased him repeatedly while resisting arrest when he fit the description of a person who attempted a break-in not far from his home. This California father of five, who took up bike riding to drop some weight, happened to be riding his bike, just like the description of the suspect that someone called into police, according to LAist on Aug. 14.
Friends, co-workers and people in the community who knew 36-year-old Dante Parker said they know police had the wrong man. The officer who tased Parker told a story that doesn’t at all sound like the man that other folks described, reports the New York Daily News today.
The officer had to tase Parker because he became irate and she couldn’t control him. Police report that he fought the female deputy and police maintain that he was a suspect in a burglary attempt. Not a soul who knew the man believes that he would do such a thing.
The female officer tased Parker a few times while waiting for help, as police report that she called in for backup. She felt that he was possibly under the influence of some “unknown substance” because he became “uncooperative” and “combative.” Two deputies struggled to get Parker into the backseat of the police car.
Once in the car Parker started sweating and he was also having trouble breathing, prompting police to call for an ambulance. The paramedics treated him and then the ambulance took him to the hospital where he died. There is no information on cause of death, but the autopsy that is scheduled should shed some light on this.
The female deputy came away with bruises. Dante had worked for 12 years at the Victorville Daily Press as a pressman and co-workers there said the same thing that family and friends had said. They just know that Parker in no way was attempting a burglary. They just couldn’t see him doing that with the way they knew him and with the morals that he bestowed in his own kids.
He was a big man, so he could appear intimidating, but he wasn’t. He was a big “teddy bear” said his family members. His doctor had told him to drop some weight for his health and co-workers said that is why he had taken up bike riding.
During lunch breaks he could be seen doing jumping jacks or running on the company’s property. A friend and former co-worker of Dante’s, Richard Loredo said;
“Dante’s not a burglar ... You can see how well his kids were raised; he was a good dad. For the police department to portray him like that is ... unfair."
Could it be that this was a case of mistaken identity? All who knew Parker said that what police described was not all like the father of five and family man. Most made Parker sound similar to a modern day “Father Knows Best.” So what happened? Was this a case of mistaken identity like Parker's family, friends and co-workers suggest?