LOS ANGELES (AP) — A 66-year-old man who died this week after California police stunned him with a Taser during a struggle lay on the ground for 14 minutes without medical assistance because officers were in a standoff with his brother, who was threatening them with a gun, authorities said Thursday.
Officers carrying riot shields to protect themselves were eventually able to drag Thomas Binkley away from the house in Burbank so he could be treated by paramedics, but he died at the scene, said police Sgt. Claudio Losacco.
Police initially responded Tuesday to the nearby suburban home of a woman who said Binkley, her ex-father-in-law, had left after threatening to kill her, Losacco said.
Then they went to the home that Binkley shared with his brother, where Binkley argued with them from the front lawn and then assaulted the officers, Losacco said. During the struggle an officer discharged his Taser at Binkley.
The brother, Steve Binkley, 65, then came to the door and threatened officers before arming himself with a gun and barricading himself inside, Losacco said.
“They saw him with a handgun, so they took cover and called for backup,” he said.
Officers dragged Thomas Binkley off the front yard once they had the metal riot police shields to protect themselves. He had been on the ground for 14 minutes, Losacco said.
The standoff with Steve Binkley ended with his surrender 40 minutes after he had barricaded himself inside the house.
“He was walking out and he put his hands over his head, got on the ground and they took him away,” neighbor Nancy Harrington said.
Police recovered a handgun.
Steve Binkley was held for lack of $25,000 bail and was due to make his first court appearance Friday, according to Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department records. It wasn’t known Thursday if he had an attorney.
An autopsy was planned to determine the cause of death, the Los Angeles County coroner’s office said.
The Binkley brothers’ elderly mother also lived at the home about 10 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles and was inside it with her caretaker during the standoff.
Neighbors told police and reporters that the brothers frequently fought among themselves.
“They’ve kind of had a feud for a long time,” Harrington told KABC-TV.
The death was being investigated by Burbank police and the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office.