Instead, Lambert, 46, would be tased by three South Boston Police Officers, Corporal Tiffany Bratton, Officer Clifton Mann and Officer Travis Clay — 20 times, during the course of a half an hour just outside the doors of the emergency room.
Newly released footage, obtained by MSNBC, shows the moments leading up to his death.
“Why are you trying to kill me, man? Don’t do it, please don’t do it, please officers,” Lambert pleads in the footage.
Lambert was picked up in a Virginia motel, for reportedly behaving delusionally while under the influence of cocaine. He was not under arrest, and the officers claimed that he was being taken to the hospital for treatment.
Despite the fact that he was not under arrest, he was handcuffed as he was placed in the back of a police vehicle. When they arrived at the hospital, Lambert kicked out the window of the cruiser, jumped out, and began running to the entrance of the emergency room.
The officers followed, and began electrocuting him with their stun guns at the hospital doors. As he was on the ground, having been shocked repeatedly, an officer is heard stating, “every time you get up, I’m going to pop you.”
Lambert’s body goes stiff and, with his hands cuffed, his arms could not break the fall when he hit the cement, MSNBC noted. Nurses and hospital staff looked on.
Nurses who witnessed the incident reported that they saw “three officers” tasing Lambert “at one time.”
“I’m going to light you up again – roll over, roll over, turn over!” Officer Bratton says.
At this point, instead of bringing him into the hospital for the treatment he clearly needed, he was shackled and lead back to the police vehicle.
He is tased again, and threatened with more unless he sits up.
Instead of bringing him inside to receive the medical treatment that they had taken him to the hospital for in the first place, they took him to jail. When they arrived he was unconscious, and by the time an ambulance could arrive to take him back to the hospital that they had just left, he was dead.
His cause of death, according to the official autopsy, was “cocaine intoxication,” yet less than.01 mg/L of the drug was found in his system. Not nearly enough to cause an overdose in normal circumstances.
His sister, Gwendolyn Smalls, has now filed a $25 million dollar lawsuit for his death.
All three officers have since been promoted.
One normal 5-second long Taser discharge shoots 50,000 volts of electricity into a person’s body. If every tase that was deployed made contact with the restrained man, it would mean he was shocked for 87 seconds – a level MSNBC noted is capable of inflicting serious injury or death, according to federal guidelines.
Most of the shocks came from Officer Bratton, who used her Taser on the helpless man 15 times – 10 of which were during a two-minute time span.
According to the department’s own policies, tasing “is no longer justified once the subject has been restrained.”