Galeano inquest Officers talked of firing
TWO police officers first on the scene at a Brandon unit where a man was allegedly tasered up to 28 times discussed s hooting Antonio Galeano when the use of the device failed to be effective.
Constable Marina Cross said despite the deployment of the taser, the naked, ranti n g a n d b l o o d - c o v e r e d 39-year-old continued to be a g g r e s s i v e a n d v i o l e n t towards her and SeniorConstable Craig Myles, so lethal force was suggested.
‘‘( Sen-Const Myles) said if ( Mr Galeano) doesn’t calm down one of us may have to shoot him,’’ she said yesterday at the inquest into the Brandon man’s death.
I n her e v i d e nce Const C r o s s c l a i me d s h e wa s shocked to hear that the taser may have been activated 28 times because she only witnessed her colleague u s e t h e d e v i c e o n f i v e occasions.
‘‘ I clearly recall only activations,’’ she said.
Const Cross added that she believed Sen-Const Myles’s use of the device was appropriate as she felt ‘‘ threatened and shocked’’ by Mr Galeano’s behaviour after being called to a Green St address on June 12, 2009.
When she arrived, sounds of smashing glass were heard as a ‘‘ hysterical’’ Sandra Wynne told them Mr Galeano was ‘‘ going off’ and they then saw him, blood-covered with dilated pupils and ranting.
‘‘ His behaviour was very
five b i z a r r e , ’ ’ Const Cross said.
She told the inquest SenConst Myles fired his taser when Mr Galeano l ooked like he was trying to project himself out of the window towards them. But the activation was not effective, she claimed, and Mr Galeano remained at the window, so Sen-Const Myles tasered him a second time and he fell to the bathroom floor.
‘ ‘ ( Mr Galeano) then attempted to stand up, but slipped and fell on his side. Then he tried to get his footing to stand up again, and slipped on his stomach,’’ Const Cross said.
The policewoman said she then used OC spray to ‘‘ absolutely no effect’’ as Mr Gale a no s t a r t e d i nchi ng towards her, armed with a metal pole.
She told the inquest that Sen-Const Myles, who had then come to join her inside, activated the taser three more times to help in trying to subdue Mr Galeano so he could be handcuffed.
Const Cross said a struggling and ranting Mr Galeano was kept restrained on the ground while they waited for assistance.
She said Ayr police station officer-in-charge Senior-Sergeant Gavin Oates was on the scene soon after and started chest compressions when Mr Galeano’s face was seen to turn black. But no oral respiration was given as a CPR face mask could not be found in a police first-aid kit.
T h e i n q u e s t c o n t i n u e s today.