Advertisement

Salt Lake Police release footage of Nykon Brandon's fatal encounter with officers

1/4
The Salt Lake City Police Department released footage from the arrest of Nykon Brandon a man who died after he was detained by police for allegedly stealing beer from a brewery in his underwear. Graphic images follow. File Photo by Carl Ballou/Shutterstock
The Salt Lake City Police Department released footage from the arrest of Nykon Brandon a man who died after he was detained by police for allegedly stealing beer from a brewery in his underwear. Graphic images follow. File Photo by Carl Ballou/Shutterstock

Aug. 28 (UPI) -- The Salt Lake City Police Department has released body camera footage of a man who died after he was detained by police for allegedly stealing beer from a brewery in his underwear.

Nykon Brandon, 35, died at a hospital in Salt Lake City after he was taken into custody around 3:15 p.m. on Aug. 14 near Fisher Brewing, police officials said in a statement after his death.

Advertisement

Workers at the brewery called 911 to report that Brandon had stolen beer and fled, he was then found by officers nearby around 3:22 p.m.

"I'm down at Fisher Brewing Company and a guy just tried to run in and steal beer. He's in his underwear and he's definitely a danger to himself and maybe the traffic around here too," said a 911 caller named Tim in a recording released by police.

Advertisement

The 911 caller told dispatchers that Brandon was unarmed but was "running around crazy, very erratic" and "throwing stuff."

"Definitely mental health issues so if you've got mental health resources, send them out," the 911 caller said.

Mark Wian with the Salt Lake City Police Department said in a news conference at the time that Brandon fought with officers who tried to arrest him.

RELATED NYPD search for gunman after five shot, one fatally, at Coney Island boardwalk

"During the fight, two of our officers were injured. They have significant injuries but they are non-life-threatening," Wian said, though he did not explain further what those injuries were.

After Brandon was taken into custody, he became unresponsive and police started providing medical aid including administering naloxone and chest compressions, Wian said.

His death drew concern from police reform activists who questioned how Brandon, who was unarmed, ended up dead.

RELATED New Mexico man indicted, New York man pleads guilty in separate cases for supporting ISIS

The graphic body camera footage released by police shows Brandon running through the middle of a street wearing white boxers and shoving officers before he's tackled to the ground. He can be heard breathing heavily and grunting as officers place their hands on him to restrain him.

Brandon can be seen pinned to the ground and struggling to push the officers off him before appearing to reach for one of the officer's guns."He's got a hand on your gun," one of the officers says in the footage.

Advertisement

Police did appear to engage in attempts to de-escalate the encounter, the videos show, until one of the officers at the scene can be heard telling another he has to "get off" of Brandon. At least six officers can be seen with their hands on Brandon at one point in the videos.

After Brandon is placed into handcuffs, multiple officers can still be seen over him while pinning his head to the ground and suggesting that they would need a "wrap."

"Relax dude," one of the officers then says before slapping Brandon, who is seen with blood on parts of his arms and back.

Officers began to perform medical aid on Brandon around 3:27 p.m., about five minutes after encountering him. He was transported to a local hospital and police were notified that he died around 4:16 p.m. His precise time of death is not yet known.

Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall signed an executive order in 2020 that requires all officers to use de-escalation techniques before applying force. The use of force is also prohibited when trying to prevent someone from self-harming when they are not an immediate threat to others.

"De-escalation tactics are no longer suggested or preferred -- they are mandatory prior to using force to effect an arrest unless it would be unreasonable to do so," Mendenhall said in the order.

Advertisement

"Officers will employ effective communication techniques in an attempt to achieve voluntary compliance. Officers will be expected to not contribute to a situation that could lead to use of force by taking unnecessary, overly aggressive action."

The officers are not seen administering naloxone to Brandon in the videos released by police.

"Our police officers come to work every day to protect our community. In the face of great stress, danger, and uncertainty, they are trained to remain professional and show strength and resiliency," Police Chief Mike Brown said in a statement.

"We are committed to carefully reviewing the investigative findings in this case. As a forward-thinking department, we will use those findings to evaluate our policies, training, and procedures to continue ensuring we are making our city safer."

Latest Headlines

Advertisement
Advertisement

Follow Us

Advertisement