Brutal Force

A suspicious death in police custody and a comatose prisoner raise new charges of misconduct as Amnesty International blasts the NYPD

Poulos says that Jean Charles Jr. had accompanied his father to respond to the summons. "Two hours later, the son got a call from Brooklyn Hospital saying that his father was in a coma and needed brain surgery. As best as we can determine, something happened in the police van while they were transporting him to Criminal Court."

An ambulance report obtained by the Voice states that Charles was "unresponsive" when taken from the back of a police van. The report indicates that his blood pressure was normal.

"He has never been arrested in his life, has no history of stroke, high blood pressure, or heart disease," Poulos claims. "It's clear that something happened in the van. Even if they didn't beat him into a coma, his head was struck against something in the back seat, and they didn't even look around while driving to court. Nobody looked in the rearview mirror to see the condition of their prisoner?"

Jean Charles lies in a coma at Brooklyn Hospital.
Jean Charles lies in a coma at Brooklyn Hospital.

Poulos asserts that "the worst irony" is that Charles got into trouble even though he repeatedly tried to obey the law. "He went to court twice, and then to the warrant squad. He did whatever was asked of him, and now he is in a coma," the attorney laments. "Whoever heard of a warrant being issued for not answering a summons for having a photostat of a compressor certificate? It defies the imagination."

Research: W. Michelle Beckles

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