The Daily Scribe

Thought Provoking Issues!

After The Game . . .

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As he and a group of friends were walking from a bar during the celebration for the Boston Celtics becoming NBA champions, David Woodman’s remarks may have cost him his life.

“Wow, it seems like there’s a lot of crime on this corner,” David said, as he and his friends passed about a dozen uniformed officers at the corner of Fenway and Brookline Avenue.

According to a friend who spoke on a condition of anonymity, the following ensued.

Officers grabbed Woodman, who was armed with nothing more than a plastic cup of beer, and as they struggled to handcuffed him, pushed his face down to the ground.

“He wasn’t being a punk or anything like that,” said the friend. “I don’t understand why the officers used such brute force to arrest him.”

The friend then stated that they were ordered to leave or face arrest. Another friend said, he returned a few minutes later and the threat of apprehension was repeated.

“They were all just around him and he was on the ground and not moving,” the friend said. “I didn’t see them giving him CPR.”

The friend’s account of the incident is in stark contrast to a Boston Police report that was given to the Howard Friedman, the family’s lawyer.

According to the report, Woodman “began struggling with officers as they attempted to handcuff him. Officers immediately realized that David Woodman was not breathing and they began to give CPR and summoned EMS to that location.”

“We don’t know what happened,” said Jeffrey Woodman. “We are left to surmise that something occurred while he was in police custody that stopped is heart.”

The Boston Globe published a story indicating that officers stated that they immediately administered cardio-pulmonary resuscitation and flagged an ambulance when they noticed that Woodman was in distress. They claimed to have done everything possible before he was taken to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

The Woodman’s disagree. They contend that their son must have been deprived of oxygen for at least for minutes for him to have suffered such significant brain damage.

It would appear that the Jeffrey and Cathy Woodman have a valid point.

Elaine Driscoll, spokeswoman for the Boston Police, at first stated that officers called for an ambulance at 12.47 a.m., in response to a drunken man on the ground, and immediately began CPR. She later amended that information, saying that officers did not administer CPR at that time but initially put out a low-priority call for an ambulance to tend to a drunken reveler.

Subsequently, over the next six minutes, she said officers discovered Woodman wasn’t breathing, initiated CPR, and at 12.53 a.m. put out a second call for an ambulance, warning “please push.”

The police report indicates that one of the officers flagged down a private Cataldo ambulance.

According to Ron Quaranto, CEO of Cataldo, his ambulance crew arrived at 12.58 a.m., and treated David Woodman at the scene. Woodman was then delivered to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center at 1:11 a.m.

Police Commissioner Edward F. Davis issued the following statement at a 10-minute press conference at police headquarters.

“It appears from the evidence we have reviewed thus far that officers did not use excessive force. No pepper spray or batons were used in this incident.”

David Woodman awoke on June 23 from a medically induced coma. At that time his parents stated that he recognized them but was unable to communicate properly and whispered, “What happened?”

His parents said, he asked to go home. They were elated. They believed their son would survive, but would require a lengthy rehabilitation.

Their hopes were dashed when David died on Sunday at 2:30 a.m.

“Based upon what we know thus far, we do not believe that any excessive force was used, and we do believe officers responded reasonably,” Driscoll stated.

Yet no one has been able to explain to the Woodmans, why it took eight police officers and one supervisor to subdue their son.

Ironically all of the officers had to be treated at a hospital for stress following the incident.

The president of the Boston Police Patrolmen’s Association, Thomas J. Nee said, he fully understands the Woodman’s anguish, “but nothing those officers did that night caused his death.”

The large scrape that was visible near David’s right eye and his significant brain damage.

Jeffrey and Cathy Woodman find that hard to believe . . .

Bradley Booth/Freelance Commercial Writer/Author



One Response

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  1. This is a very tragic story and I hope the victim’s family is able to find peace through and after the trial.


    July 17, 2008 at 7:59 pm

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