Mom's 911 Call for Son's Mental Health, But Ends in Tragic moment


AP photo/Charlie riedel

,- When Taylor Ware's son went into a manic episode at a rest stop in rural southern Indiana, his mother was frantic for help, but what she saw instead was a chain of events that resulted in his terrible death. This August 2019 event clarifies a more general problem with police using force on people who are going through mental health crises.

Bipolar disorder was afflicting 24-year-old Marine Corps veteran Taylor, and his mother Robin Rank was attempting to get him the care he required. But things swiftly became violent when Taylor was bitten by a police dog, jolted with a Taser, and given a sedative injection. His death was among more than a thousand known incidents in which people perished after police used force meant to subdue them without killing them.

Though Taylor did not fit the requirements for involuntary commitment, his friends had tried to get him admitted to the hospital. Fearing for Taylor's safety, his mother dialed 911 for help as his actions at the rest stop started to get out of hand. Law enforcement's reaction, nevertheless, made matters worse rather than better.

Taylor was restrained and subdued on the ground after force was applied, including the use of a Taser and a police dog. Then he received an injection of a strong sedative, which finally caused his death. Experts who examined the case came to the conclusion that the use of force was needless and excessive, notwithstanding attempts to defend the conduct of the officers involved.

Taylor was declared dead officially due to mental illness and a syndrome called "excited delirium," a dubious diagnosis frequently applied in situations involving deaths after police restraint. But forensic specialists say Taylor died of hypoxia brought on by the pressure employed during his detention, and they took issue with how law enforcement handled the matter.

The terrible result of Taylor's interaction with the police emphasizes the need of better instruction and procedures when assisting people going through mental health emergencies. Taylor's family wants reforms to stop future occurrences of this kind because they think structural shortcomings had a role in his death.

Taylor's organ donation serves as a reminder of his kindness to his family while they grieve his passing. Knowing that his son's legacy endures, Taylor's father, Tom Ware, maintains ties to the recipient of his heart. 

This narrative's details are derived on witness Pauline Engel's cellphone video and the 911 call audio.

(Newsline Paper)

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