RPD body cam video shows what happened before and after Daniel Prude’s encounter with police
ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — News10NBC obtained 88 minutes of body camera video worn by Rochester Police officers involved in the arrest of Daniel Prude.
What this video shows us is what happened before Rochester Police encountered Daniel Prude on Jefferson Avenue, and it shows what happened when police went back to his brother’s house after Prude stopped breathing.
"Hey, what’s up?" an officer says as he walks into Joe Prude’s home on Rochester’s west side.
It was 3:05 a.m., March 23.
Joe Prude called 911 concerned about his brother Daniel who ran from his house.
Joe Prude: "He came here, the drug he was on, it got him hallucinating."
In less than 20 minutes, Daniel Prude would be in police custody, handcuffed and unconscious.
The body camera video picks up this radio call.
Radio call: "The guy is supposed to be on PCP if they run into him."
RPD: "Okay. Is he on PCP?"
Joe Prude: "Bingo."
Under cause of death, the autopsy report includes "Acute (PCP) intoxication." It also says "Complications of asphyxia in the setting of physical restraint and excited delirium." The autopsy ruled Prude’s death a homicide.
In the video, Joe Prude also tells the officer he checked Daniel Prude into Strong Hospital at approximately 4 p.m. the previous evening, March 22.
RPD: "How long was he at Strong?"
Joe Prude: "Man, only a few hours."
Prude would later tell the officer that his brother was sent home by Strong Hospital in a medical cab. Prude says the cab arrived at his home at around 9 p.m.
The video shows Joe Prude telling the officer, "When the doctor called me and told me they released him I’m saying how are you going to sit here and say you’re going to release him when he was (inaudible) telling he was going to hurt himself."
While the police are at Joe Prude’s house, body camera video from other officers shows they discover broken glass at a T-Mobile store on West Main Street. They would later learn this was broken by Daniel Prude and was the source of his bleeding.
Back at his brother’s house, the radio call says they found him.
The officer drives to Jefferson Avenue, a little more than a mile away.
When the officer arrives, the video shows Daniel Prude is already handcuffed.
RPD: "Are you Daniel?"
Daniel Prude: "Yes, sir."
The body camera video shows Daniel Prude was naked on the street. It shows some erratic behavior including times when he screamed at police and asked police for their weapons.
"Get the (expletive) away from me!" the video records Daniel Prude saying. "Give me your gun. I need (inaudible). Give me your gun, I need it."
But it shows Daniel Prude followed police commands, including lying down and putting his hands behind his back.
At 3:20 a.m., when Prude tried to sit up, the video shows police put him back down and pinned him on the damp asphalt. One frame of body camera video shows one officer in a push-up stance with his hands on Prude’s head and neck. Another officer had his knee in the middle of Prude’s back.
By 3:23 a.m., Prude’s body stops moving.
One officer asked him, "My man! You puking?"
Less than 10 minutes after he was handcuffed, Prude stopped breathing, had no pulse, was getting CPR and put into an ambulance headed for Strong Hospital.
Body camera video from another police officer takes us into the Emergency Room at Strong Hospital and that’s when we hear conversation about Daniel Prude being at Strong just hours before.
RPD at Strong: "He was here earlier tonight for psych."
RPD at Strong: "So he was treated and released?"
Woman: "Yeah, he was MHA’d (mental health arrest)."
RPD: "He was MHA’d? So how long was he here?"
Woman: "Not that long."
URMC issued this statement when contacted by News10NBC:
"Privacy laws prevent us from discussing Daniel Prude’s evaluation or treatment at Strong Memorial Hospital. However, our care teams follow all applicable laws and standards of clinical care regarding evaluation and treatment of patients under Mental Health Arrest. We are conducting a thorough internal review and have offered to meet with the family to share with them all details of his care at Strong."
At 3:59 a.m., the original officer returns to Joe Prude’s house.
RPD: "So uh, we got, your brother’s at Strong."
Joe Prude: "Uh-huh."
RPD: "But the bosses want me to hang out here with you until they figure some more stuff out."
The conversation lasts for 10 minutes. The officer does not tell Joe Prude the details of what happened to his brother, but they talk about how Daniel Prude tried to hurt himself.
Woman: "Yeah, earlier he went and jumped in front of the train."
Joe Prude: "Yeah, the train missed him by this much."
The officer then asked about Daniel Prude’s drug use.