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Autopsy: Police Contributed To Man’s Death In North Chicago

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Darrin Hanna died in November 2011, a week after he was allegedly beaten and repeatedly shocked with a stun gun at the hands of North Chicago police. (Family supplied photo)

Darrin Hanna died in November 2011, a week after he was allegedly beaten and repeatedly shocked with a stun gun at the hands of North Chicago police. (Family supplied photo)

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NORTH CHICAGO, Ill. (CBS) — The Lake County Coroner’s office says police blows and a Taser shock are to blame in part for the death of a man who was involved in a confrontation with North Chicago police last November.

As WBBM Newsradio’s John Cody reports, Lake County Coroner Artis Yancey says the death of Darrin Hanna, 45, was caused in part by trauma inflicted by police after they shocked him with a Taser. Also contributing to his death were cocaine abuse, high blood pressure, and poor kidney function.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s John Cody reports

Hanna’s family has sued the city of North Chicago, claiming six officers beat him and repeatedly shocked him with a stun gun when they arrested him over a domestic dispute. Their suit claims officers beat and shocked him for 20 minutes, even though he did not resist arrest.

An earlier independent autopsy commissioned by Hanna’s family concluded that police brutality was to blame for his death.

In the wake of the official autopsy results, Hanna’s cousin, Illinois State Rep. Rita Mayfield (D-Waukegan) termed the report, thorough, albeit with a caveat.

“I would have liked for it to have just basically stated that he died as a result of trauma, which was, in my opinion, the principal cause of his death,” she said.

Mayfield seeks action on the report.

“I would like to see the cops that were involved, I would like to see them disciplined. And I would like to have some healing for North Chicago,” she said. “We have some very good cops in North Chicago. We really do.”

In the wake of the scandal stemming from Hanna’s death and other allegations of police brutality in North Chicago, police Chief Michael Newsome resigned late last month. Newsome had been put on administrative leave by North Chicago Mayor Leon Rockingham just after New Year’s, pending the outcome of the investigation of Hanna’s death.

Coroner Yancey has forwarded the report to the Lake County State’s attorney, who will decide whether to seek criminal charges against the police officers involved with the incident with Hanna.

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