Police Used Pepper Spray, Struggled With Tiverton Man Before His Death
Portsmouth police released the following information Tuesday.
State Police are currently investigating this incident. Craig Raposa, 25, of 1 Mill St., Tiverton, was transported to Newport Hospital after this incident and later pronounced dead.
The Portsmouth Fire Department received a 911 call Friday at 11:22 a.m. from Raposa, who requested the fire department check the welfare of his mother who lives at Bay View Estates.
Portsmouth Rescue arrived first and "found Mr. Raposa's mother to be fine, but determined that Mr. Raposa, who was on scene himself, seemed to be experiencing psychological difficulties," according to the press release issued by Portsmouth police.
"Fire and police personnel then attempted to persuade Mr. Raposa to allow rescue personnel to transport him to the hospital for evaluation.
"Initially, Mr. Raposa was cooperative and in agreement; however, as fire and police personnel were escorting Mr. Raposa to the rescue, Mr. Raposa suddenly became combative and attempted to flee the scene."
According to the release, one police officer attempted to restrain Raposa and a struggle ensued. Raposa was then hit with pepper spray.
"Due to Mr. Raposa’ s physical size and strength accompanied with him being combative, the police officer was forced to release an OC spray in an attempt to subdue Mr. Raposa while trying to handcuff him, the results of the OC had no apparent affect and the struggle continued," according to release.
"At that time Portsmouth Rescue personnel, a nearby civilian and Mr. Raposa’ s mother then attempted to assist the officer in gaining control of him. Mr. Raposa continued to violently resist their efforts.
"Once two additional officers arrived on the scene, Mr. Raposa was successfully restrained. Shortly thereafter, Mr. Raposa became unresponsive and was transported to the Newport Hospital, where he was pronounced dead."
Portsmouth police immediately notified the Attorney General's Office and State Police, who responded and began an investigation.
Portsmouth Patch will continue to follow this story as it develops.