A French driver who died after he was arrested in Paris, has pleaded “I am suffocating” several times that the police are holding him on the ground.
Footage has emerged of a 42 year-old Cedric Chouviat saying that he could not breathe seven times in 22 seconds, as officers pinned him to the ground.
Four police officers are being blamed for “manslaughter” about the arrest, near the Eiffel Tower in January, which echoes the death of George Floyd in the US that has sparked worldwide protests and Black Lives Matter protests.
The Police said that they arrested Chouviat on his scooter, after saying that he was looking for his cell phone and took a dirty plate. The agents say that it has been disrespectful and abusive and resisted arrest.
However, a report from the National Gendarmerie Institute of Criminal Research of the suggested exchanges between the police and the delivery driver were “correct”, even if the officers may have felt that he was a “provocateur” or a “rebel”.
Bands reviewed by the researchers suggest that the situation has turned at the end of nine minutes and 44 seconds trade in which Chouviat may have heard of the call of an agent of a “crazy” several times.
According to witnesses cited by The World, the officers had Chouviat, the father of five children, in a chokehold, a controversial restraint technique that has been banned by the minister of the interior, Christophe Castaner, this month, then reinstated after complaints to the police.
In a report on the incident by the investigators, seen by The World, the investigative website Mediapart and news agency Agence France-Presse, an expert who has analyzed several video recordings of the arrest, said: “apart from the arrest, we have not noticed any blatantly violent words or noises. The exchange is relatively civil, even if we can see a form of “provocation” or “contempt” in (Couviat word.”
He adds: “At 11 minutes 16 seconds (Couviat) indicates to the police officer that he is a ‘crazy’. The agent decides to stop it. In the next 22 seconds you can hear the different sounds that we cannot identify. The arrested person repeatedly said “I am sweltering’ . You can hear one of the police officers say, ‘All good, all good, the handcuffs’.”
Chouviat had a heart attack and was transported to the hospital in a coma. He died two days later. An autopsy concluded that he died by asphyxiation after he suffered a “fracture of the larynx”.
None of the police officers has been suspended. Laurent-Franck Lienard, a lawyer, for three of them, ” said LCI they had not heard Chouviat the last words and “had absolutely no idea” of what he has to say.
Lienard, said the arrested man had submitted the font to “approximately 15 minutes of insults”, calling them “clowns”, “the puppet” and “crazy”. He said that his clients had not used the chokehold.