The Greensboro Police Department has released the body worn camera videos of the officers involved in the incident on Monday, June 17 on Maybank Drive involving Aaron Michael Andrews who after being detained by police stopped breathing while Guilford County Emergency Medical Services was preparing to transport him to the hospital and was pronounced dead about 20 minutes later.
The police department requested and received permission from North Carolina Superior Court judge Susan Bray to release the videos. Under North Carolina law a police body worn camera video can only be released to the public by the order of a Superior Court Judge.
Greensboro Police Chief Wayne Scott introduces the videos and notes that it was being done because there were questions about the incident since Andrews died after being detained by police.
In this case, it appears the videos should help quell any questions about the police behavior. For instance, Andrews suffered some abrasions on his legs and from the police video the viewer can see that those abrasions were there when the police responded to a call from a woman about a man trying to break into her house and found Andrews in her carport.
Andrews was unable to respond to questions from police about who he was or what he was doing. His responses are unintelligible and he was clearly in distress.
One of Andrews’s housemates told police that shortly before they were called, he saw Andrews walking down the street and Andrews had dirt all over him, had what looked like vomit in his mustache and was covered in sweat.
The police did handcuff Andrews after they found him agitated and incoherent. But after handcuffing him, police officers found what looked like a car seat for him to lean against and tried to keep him calm. At one point an officer was holding each foot as Andrews struggled. It appears they were trying to keep him from hurting himself. Police officers repeatedly urge Andrews to keep breathing and to take deep breaths. They assure him that help is on the way.
The officers continue to talk to Andrews to try to calm him while waiting for EMS to arrive. There was short struggle when the officers were handcuffing Andrews, partly caused by the fact that Andrews was a large man and the police had to use two sets of handcuffs.
No doubt those that find fault with everything the Greensboro Police Department does will find fault with the actions of the officers in this case, but the video is available at the City of Greensboro website at https://www.greensboro-nc.gov/departments/police/gpd-cases. You can watch it and make your own decision.
The police department prepared a compilation of the police body worn videos and also posted the individual videos of three officers on the scene. The camera of one of the officers present was not working, so there were four officers and three videos.
Also included is a video of an officer who responded to a call from the house where Andrews lived. As Scott explains the police believe the call is related and provides some additional information.