The family of a young man who died in a blood-smeared cell after hitting his head against concrete more than 100 times are looking to take legal action against the police.
The Independent Police Conduct Authority report into Sentry Taitoko’s death was released yesterday.
The heavily intoxicated 20-year-old from Manurewa had suffered “an extreme and dangerous drug reaction” and police failed repeatedly in their care for him while he was in custody, said authority chairman Sir David Carruthers.
Sentry’s brother, John Taitoko, said the family felt vindicated by the report and reinforced in their belief that the death could have been prevented.
They were still unhappy with police. “They failed in their duty.”
The family were looking to take legal action against the police. “It’s not closed, it’s still going,” John Taitoko said.
“It’s more like the negligence side of it … he was unmonitored for 50 minutes and in his state he should have been watched five times an hour.”
The overstretched Police force trying to monitor people who shouldn’t be in their holding cells in the first place added to a ‘who cares’ mentality from the cops leads to a young man being able to smash his head against the wall and floors of his cell 114 times.
If this lack of care had occurred to a nice middle class kid, there would be an uproar. Unfortunately our authority worship culture means the Police can do no wrong and distressed and sick 20 year olds can die in their cells alone.
Shhhh. Think about the Cricket or something.