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Four Louisiana Officers Charged in Death of Black Man With Mental Illness

Dr. Thoma found that Mr. McGlothen was “not a candidate for incarceration” given his medical status, prosecutors said. They said the officers’ actions had been “substantial factors” in Mr. McGlothen’s death from “excited delirium.”

The American Medical Association has defined the condition as the sudden death of people “who are combative and in a highly agitated state” and who have exhibited “agitation, excitability, paranoia, aggression and apparent immunity to pain, often associated with stimulant use and certain psychiatric disorders,” the district attorney’s office said.

The officers face up to 10 years in prison if convicted on both counts, prosecutors said.

All four turned themselves in on Friday and were released on $20,000 bonds, according to the Caddo Parish Sheriff’s Office. The Shreveport Police Department declined to comment on the charges or to say if the officers were still on the force.

Dhu Thompson, a lawyer for Officer LeClare, said he was “extremely disappointed” in the indictment.

“I am confident based on what we know about the case that my client will be fully exonerated,” he said. “We look forward to this trial.”

It was not immediately clear if the three other officers had lawyers.

Sgt. Michael Carter, president of the Shreveport police officers’ union, said the union was “extremely regretful” that Mr. McGlothen died. But he said the officers should not have been charged because they were engaged in a “nasty street fight.”

“They had no choice but to engage with this man who would not stop resisting a lawful arrest,” Sergeant Carter said. “This incident could not be de-escalated.”

The charges came amid intense scrutiny of police brutality after the killing in May of George Floyd, a 46-year-old Black man, who was pinned to the ground by a white police officer’s knee in an encounter captured on video.

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