The death last week of a mentally distraught man — first stunned with a Taser by police before a second and deadly shock from a hospital security officer hours later — was being investigated Thursday by the Weber County Attorney’s Office.
Logan Police Chief Gary Jensen said officers had been dispatched to an undisclosed residence about 7:30 p.m. on Jan. 17 on a 911 call about a man "screaming and acting strange." When police arrived they found the man, later identified as 49-year-old Bruce Neil Thomson, "yelling at Satan. [He] would not calm down or comply with officers’ reasoning or orders," Jensen said.
Thomson allegedly reached inside a doorway threatening to get a gun. He refused to show his hands and one of the officers fired his Taser. Thomson was then taken into custody and transported to Logan Regional Hospital.
"Later he calmed down [and] was interviewed and ultimately cited for disorderly conduct, resisting arrest and released [to] the hospital," Jensen said.
However, Logan police were called again to the hospital about three hours later on a report of a "combative patient." When officers arrived, they learned the patient — Thomson — had gone into cardiac arrest after being shocked again with a Taser during an altercation with hospital security.
Hospital personnel’s efforts to revive Thomson were unsuccessful.
Jensen said the investigation was being handled by the Weber County Attorney’s Office, rather than Cache County, to ensure a neutral review.
He declined to answer further questions about Thomson’s medical history, or whether he had a history with law enforcement, citing the ongoing nature of the investigation.
Logan Regional Hospital spokesman Troy Oldham, citing both the investigation under way and patient privacy issues, also declined to discuss the incident other than to say the hospital was fully cooperating with the Weber County Attorney’s Office.
Weber County Attorney Dee Smith would not discuss the case, other than to confirm that he had "assigned an investigator to it and he’s in the middle of the investigation."
According to a search of Utah court documents, Thomson has no violent criminal history, but does have three felony theft convictions between 1989-1999. A search of Idaho court records reveal no other criminal history.
Funeral services for Thomson were held Tuesday in his hometown of Rexburg, Idaho.
His obituary stated that he most recently worked in assembly of medical testing devices and had previously worked on construction of roller coaster cars and orthodontic appliances.
Tribune reporter Jessica Miller contributed to this story.
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