Man hit with Taser by Oxford police dies
Fri Apr 25, 2008 6:41AM
A former Walton Hills man who was hit with a Taser by Oxford police after a bar fight last week died just after 5 p.m. Thursday.
Kevin Piskura, 24, had been in critical condition at University Hospital in Cincinnati since the incident early Saturday morning.
Piskura was a 2002 graduate of Benedictine High School and a 2006 graduate of Miami University. He had moved to Chicago after graduating from Miami.
Hospital spokesman Don Crouse said he could not release details of Piskura’s injuries. In a statement released through the hospital, Piskura’s family requested privacy while thanking people for their support.
“Today, we lost a son, a brother, a family member and a friend,” the family said. “The medical staff and everyone here at University Hospital were heroic in their efforts to save Kevin, and for that we are eternally grateful.”
“In the end, it seems there was simply nothing more anyone could do,” the family statement continues. “No one feels this loss more deeply than we do, however we still request that people refrain from rash judgment and wait until the independent investigation of this event is complete, lest tragedy lead to more tragedy.”
In a written statement from Oxford Police, the city manager and police chief, “expressed their deepest sympathy” to the family and noted that the Butler County sheriff and prosecutor are investigating the incident.
A police report states that officers responded to the Brick Street Bar on High Street to help staff remove patrons about 2 a.m. Saturday. Though a companion of Piskura backed down when ordered to by officers, the report states, Piskura fought with police and bar staff.
He was warned that the officer had a Taser, then was hit with the weapon for several seconds. He was taken to a local hospital when he was unresponsive and later sent to University Hospital. Piskura’s companion, Kevin Smith, also 24 and of Chicago, was cited for disorderly conduct.
Police used a X26 Taser model, which transmits electrical pulses through wires and into the body affecting the sensory and motor functions of the peripheral nervous system, according to the company’s website. The energy can penetrate up to two cumulative inches of clothing, or one inch per probe.
Piskura’s father Charles is a retired Bedford Police officer and his mother Mary teaches at St. Barnabas elementary school in Northfield.
Police Get Black Uniforms To Instill Fear
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — Springfield’s men in black are returning.
The city’s new police commissioner, William Fitchet, says members of the department’s Street Crime Unit will again don black, military-style uniforms as part of his strategy to deal with youth violence.
Fitchet’s predecessor, Edward Flynn, had ditched the black attire as part of an effort to soften the image of the unit. Flynn left Springfield in January to become the police chief in Milwaukee.
Sgt. John Delaney told a city council hearing Wednesday that the stark uniforms send a message to criminals that officers are serious about making arrests.
Delaney said a sense of “fear” has been missing for the past few years.
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