Officials: Person seriously injured while in New Haven police custody
NEW HAVEN, CT (WFSB) – A person was seriously injured while in custody of New Haven police Sunday night, officials said.
Police were responding to a weapons complaint.
New Haven officials said Richard Cox, 36, had a handgun.
He is a convicted felon and cannot have possession of a firearm, police said.
The officer was driving Cox from Lilac Street to the station. When the officer got to the corner of Division and Mansfield Street, the driver had to stop abruptly to avoid an accident, officials say.
Officials say he was uncooperative while being taken into a police van.
He suffered injuries to his neck and spine and may become paralyzed , officials said.
City leaders said Cox was transported to Yale New Haven Hospital, and underwent surgery.
“Mr. Cox suffered a serious injury, and may suffer paralysis,” says acting police chief Regina Rush-Kittle.
Assistant Chief Carl Jacobson says New Haven Police Policy requires officers to stop and get medical attention when someone is injured during transport.
“I think it was in the officer’s mind to get to detention because he was close to meet the responding medical people there,” says Jacobson.
Jacobson says American Medical Response was notified about the injury before the van got back to the station.
“From there, American Medical Response transported Mr. Cox to Yale New Haven Hospital where he underwent surgery,” says Rush-Kittle.
New Haven Police say they have three vans, two do not use seatbelts. Instead, they use hooks.
“Because the person is handcuffed behind their backs, they would hold the hooks,” officials say.
The Attorney General and the State’s Attorney’s Office are investigating this incident.
Stay with Eyewitness News for updates.
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