Video shows black suspect who died in police custody shouted 'I can't breathe' during prior arrest
The family of a black man who died in police custody after his arrest has made a formal complaint against the police after pictures of his reluctance have emerged.
A video shot on June 17 last year shows 35-year-old Simeon Francis accusing officials of being "racist" while holding him to the ground.
While he is being held by three officers, Francis can be heard shouting "I can't breathe" before saying "You have my throat".
An officer then appears to be pressing his knee against Mr. Francis' back when a viewer asks, "Do you really need that many officers on him?"
The family of 35-year-old Simeon Francis, who died in custody after his arrest, has filed a formal complaint against the police. (SWNS)
But Francis died on May 21 at the Torquay police station after a second arrest in Exeter early in the morning - ten months after his first arrest.
Only a few hours after his arrest, he was found to have stopped responding in a detention suite.
It is understood that the second incident took place in Exeter, Devon.
The Devon and Cornwall police have forwarded the video to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), which is already investigating his death.
Bishop Dr. Desmond Jaddoo, a spokesman for the family of Francis, said: "I wrote to Shaun Sawyer, the chief of police from Devon and Cornwall, and made a formal complaint about racial discrimination, excessive violence, and intimidation."
He also confirmed that the video was also being sent to the Chief Constable, requesting that the matter be forwarded to the IOPC.
Jaddoo added: “This video raises concerns about the actual treatment of Mr. Francis by the Devon and Cornwall police. It has given his family further and extreme worries during this difficult time. "
Francis, originally from Birmingham, moved to Torquay in Devon 16 years ago and was the father of a 10 year old child.
In a statement, his siblings said: "The news of another black man's death in police custody raises concerns about the disproportionality of black custodians.
"No matter what Simeon's past, he was our brother and loved. We want answers to why he died under these circumstances. We are devastated by the news of his death and are now seeking justice for him."
The Independent Police Behavior Office has launched an investigation into Francis' death. (SWNS)
An investigation was opened and adjourned by the coroner in Plymouth on Friday June 5.
Police in Devon and Cornwall said: "The video about Simeon Francis' arrest relates to a recall of Mr. Francis to prison in July 2019.
"The squad received a complaint regarding the video on June 17, 2020. The complaint is now under review and is subject to a voluntary referral to the IOPC. The squad has received no complaint regarding the arrest prior to that date.
"The IOPC independent investigation into the death of Simeon Francis in police custody on May 20, 2020 is ongoing and the Devon and Cornwall police are continuing to cooperate fully with this investigation."
Officials have not been disciplined for either the 2019 arrest or the death of Francis.
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