State News

Autopsy: Restraint of inmate led to death

Posted October 4

Graydon Jerome Parker III

— The various methods of restraint used on a combative Wayne County jail inmate last spring ultimately led to his death, according to an autopsy report released Wednesday.

Graydon Jerome Parker III was taken into custody on May 20 on suspicion of breaking into a car, and he was also charged with resisting arrest.

Parker continued to be uncooperative at the jail, and detention officers used pepper spray, stun guns and shackles to restrain him, according to the autopsy report. At one point, it took five detention officers and a State Highway Patrol trooper to pin him to the ground, the report states.

Within minutes of barbs of a stun gun being used, Parker suffered a heart attack, according to the report. He was taken to Wayne UNC Health Care, where he died.

Medical examiners determined the cause of death to be a lack of oxygen to Parker's brain after the heart attack "following blunt force trauma, physical restraint, pepper spray use, and conducted electrical weapon application."

The State Bureau of Investigation has been reviewing the case.

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  • Jeffrey Derry Oct 4, 4:22 p.m.
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    Don't resist arrest