Tucson CitizenTucson Citizen

Man who died after Taser shock from police identified

Police have identified a 50-year-old man who died Thursday after being shocked with a Taser by officers as Gary A. Decker of Kentucky.

Sgt. Mark Robinson, a spokesman for the Tucson Police Department, said autopsy results are pending and officials do not know what caused Decker’s death.

Police received a call from the Extended Stay America at 5050 E. Grant Road at 4:13 a.m., asking to check the welfare of a guest, Robinson said.

The management reported hearing noises, music, banging and moaning coming from an upstairs room, he said.

Officers entered the room with a pass key and discovered the suite had been ransacked and furniture had been broken, Robinson said.

Decker was found naked in the bathroom holding a seat that he had apparently torn from the toilet, Robinson said in a news release.

An officer shocked Decker with the Taser when Decker grabbed one of the officers, but the shock appeared to have no effect on him.

Officers were able to handcuff Decker and remove him from the bathroom. They called for paramedics, which Robinson said was mandatory procedure any time a Taser is used.

The officers said Decker was not responding to them as they waited for paramedics and he was unconscious when help arrived.

Investigators say Decker had been in town for roughly a week for a temporary job as a furniture liquidator.

Robinson said the police investigation continues and asks that anyone who may have known Decker and have information about what led up to the incident to call the TPD homicide unit at 791-4487.

The department has convened a Board of Inquiry to look into the incident and Robinson said the board will examine the use of the Taser as part of its review of the incident.

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