In-Custody Death: Sonoma County Deputy Lied in Court About Past Carotid Hold
A Sonoma County sheriff’s deputy who police say performed a carotid hold on a Petaluma man shortly before he died last week used a similar neck hold on a woman in 2015 and then lied about it in court.
David Glen Ward, 52, died after a car chase and struggle with sheriff’s deputies and police on Nov. 27. Officers from Sebastopol and Sonoma County deputies incorrectly suspected that Ward was driving a stolen vehicle, according to the Santa Rosa Police Department, which is investigating the incident. The Marin County Coroner's Office has not yet issued its report on Ward’s cause of death.
Sonoma County Deputy Jason Little tried to pull Ward over just before 6 a.m. Ward had reported his vehicle stolen three days before, according to Santa Rosa police, and Little was responding to a report from an off-duty detective that the vehicle was located near Frei Road in Sebastopol.
Ward stopped his car, authorities say, and then took off again, leading Little and two Sebastopol police officers on a seven-minute chase. Sonoma County sheriff's Deputy Charles Blount arrived on the scene, and all four officers approached the vehicle, according to the Santa Rosa Police Department.
Police say Ward ignored their orders to open the car door. When Ward rolled down the driver's side window, officers tried to pull him out through the opening. Ward struggled, according to officials, biting the two deputies.
Officers struck and tried to use a Taser on Ward during the struggle. Then Blount reached through the car window and attempted to perform a carotid hold around Ward’s neck, according to officials. The hold involves restricting the vascular arteries on the sides of the subject’s neck with an officer’s arm.
Police finally extracted Ward from the vehicle by breaking the other window and pulling him out through the passenger-side door. Source