18-Year-Old Shoplifting Suspect Dies of Heart Attack While in Police Custody



Hours after he was picked up by Indianapolis police officers for allegedly shoplifting from a Burlington Coat Factory and pointing a gun at a security guard on Saturday, 18-year-old Terrell Day was pronounced dead of a heart attack while still in custody on the way to the hospital after complaining that he could not breathe.

The first time Day said he was having trouble breathing, he was checked by a medic who deemed him fit enough to stay in jail rather than be transported to a hospital.

Watch video below, via WTHR:

13 WTHR Indianapolis

Now, an internal investigation is underway after Day’s mother, Shanika Askew, demanded an explanation as to why her son was not immediately brought to the hospital when he first presented symptoms. “I just want answers to why they didn’t send him to the hospital when he said he was hurting the first time,” she said of Day, who apparently did not have a history of medical problems. “Why did they leave and have to come back?”

“He could have went to jail, they could have did whatever they wanted to do, long as they could have took him alive,” Askew added. “Don’t just determine there’s nothing wrong with him, cause obviously, there was something wrong with him and they ignored it.”

In a statement to the New York Daily News, Sgt. Kendale Adams said, “Essentially what happened when the first ambulance left, the officers requested a jail wagon and when that jail wagon arrived they stood the individual up and he stiffened and so another ambulance was called.”

The local coroner ruled on Monday that Day died of “acute myocardial infarction, with no penetrating trauma.”

[Photo via screengrab]

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