Tennessee man Troy Goode was on his way home from a concert with his wife when he suddenly became paranoid and erratic, exiting his vehicle to run in circles in a field.
He had reportedly taken LSD, and police in Southaven, Mississippi, claim they responded appropriately to restrain the unpredictable man — hogtying him on a stretcher. Two hours later, Troy — a 30-year-old chemical engineer and father — died.
Now, an autopsy has revealed that the man may have died of a heart-related issue, WREG reported. Goode also suffered from asthma and reportedly told officers several times during the altercation that he couldn’t breathe. However it’s not clear if he died as a result of that condition, and his alleged use of LSD was not confirmed.
District Attorney John Champion said that preliminary results indicated that, while he died from an apparent heart problem, the way in which Goode was hogtied to the stretcher may not have contributed.
The story begins when the man and his wife, Kelli, and four friends headed to a Widespread Panic concert Saturday night, The Clarion-Ledger reported. The family’s attorney, Tim Edwards, told NBC News that the man and his friends took something in the parking lot at the concert, but failed to specify what it was.
Before the concert even began, he apparently became “paranoid;” another account indicated he was “intoxicated.” As a result, they left the concert. Later, Edwards said Goode climbed out of the car, then went into “a field running in circles.” A passerby saw the spectacle and called the cops.
While the man’s attorney insisted that he was not violent, the authorities have a different story. They contend Goode refused to comply with orders, was bitten after he opened the door of K-9 unit vehicle, tried to kick officers and EMTs, and kept running from officers when they tried to detain him. Meanwhile, someone told officers that Troy had taken LSD at the concert.
His behavior and the possibility that the man was intoxicated on drugs led police to restrain him with leg irons, the DA said. The leg irons were then attached to handcuffs, and he was put onto a stretcher. And, though he complained that he couldn’t breathe, the family’s lawyer said his asthma was controlled with an inhaler.
Civil rights attorney David McLaughlin had a different perspective. He was eating with his family in a diner nearby when a waitress said something was going on in the parking lot, the Ledger added. One minute, a man — identified later as Troy — was talking with police, and next minute he was on the ground with a leg in his back; two hours later, he died at the hospital. His son, Brady, filmed the interaction.
“Paramedics arrived on scene, and I see them put him in a four-point restraint or hogtie, I don’t know how else to describe it. His legs were crossed, pulled back, by my vantage point, his hands were pulled back, and I think affixed to at least one of his legs. He looked to me like he was struggling or convulsing or both. He appeared to be in distress to me … You hate to video someone at the lowest point in their life, but I’m always concerned with how police are policing. I’m very glad that there is at least some sort of independent document of what was going on with him and that he was alive when he went into the ambulance.”
Though it’s not clear how he died, or if police action directly contributed, his family seems to be pointing the finger at officers. WREG identified a different attorney, Kevin McCormack, as stating — on behalf of the Goodes — that “LSD did not take Troy Goode and hogtie him. LSD did not place him facedown, hogtied with his head strapped down on a stretcher. The Southaven Police did that.”
What is certain is that Troy, his wife, and his friends had just intended to enjoy a concert that night, and two hours later, the young man died.
“It’s just inconceivable as to why he goes from being a concert-goer to dead within a short period,” Edwards said.
[Image via WREG.]