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Sheriff’s investigation reveals new details about man’s death in Santa Rosa police custody

The 40-year-old man who died last week after being taken down by Santa Rosa police officers was shocked with a stun gun at least twice and was later administered a drug used to counteract opioid overdoses as he lay dying on a Santa Rosa cul-de-sac, the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday.

Santa Rosa officers confronted Jordon Pas, 40, on Peach Court in Roseland early Nov. 18 following reports by neighbors of gunshots being fired and a man walking through the neighborhood with a gun.

Pas, who lived within blocks of the area in southwest Santa Rosa and was not carrying the gun when officers encountered him, was brought to his knees by officers’ first use of the Taser to detain him, according to the Sheriff’s Office, which is investigating the in-custody death.

The second use of the Taser came in the same minute as Pas as appeared to try and regain his footing, the Sheriff’s Office said in its preliminary account Wednesday.

Within a minute of the second shock, and after he was handcuffed, police noticed Pas was not responsive to “verbal or physical stimulus,” the Sheriff’s Office said. Police placed Pas on his side to monitor his breathing.

Three minutes after that, at 1:39 a.m., officers gave Pas a dose of Narcan, a drug that is sprayed into the nose to counteract opioid overdoses, according to the statement. Police said Pas was found with suspected drugs but have declined to say what kind. Officials are awaiting laboratory results before disclosing the information, Valencia said.

Similarly, the cause of death determined by an autopsy conducted on Pas by the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office Coroner Unit, which will include a toxicology report, is not likely to be public for a month or more.

Santa Rosa police had been called to Peach Court by residents who heard gunshots or saw Pas walking around the neighborhood with a gun. The first call came in at 1:19 a.m., according to the latest update from the Sheriff’s Office, and Santa Rosa officers arrived on Peach Court at 1:27 a.m.

Videos captured by a home security camera on the cul-de-sac minutes before Pas engaged with police show a man, without a rifle at that time, rummaging through a yard, throwing garden items, and picking up a rock. The man yells incoherently and appears intoxicated or in the grips of a mental health crisis.

Police say they found Pas holding a large landscaping rock and pacing, shirtless, at 1:29 a.m. He was not holding a gun, but investigators found a firearm on a nearby lawn the next morning. The gun is a version of an AK-47 assault rifle that has a pistol grip, Valencia said.

Pas did not comply with orders to drop the rock, and officers told him if he didn’t put the rock down he would be “tased,” according to the Sheriff’s Office. In a video residents provided to The Press Democrat, police can be heard yelling at Pas to “drop it.” Most of the shouting is unintelligible.

That video shows Pas moving erratically in the beams of police flashlights and spotlights as officers approach him. He goes to his knees after being shocked, and a second shock also appears visible. He then collapses face down to the pavement of the cul-de-sac where he is swarmed by officers.

Police may have shocked Pas more than twice, Valencia said, but investigators have so far only confirmed two uses of a stun gun. Pas was bleeding from an injury to his head or face, Valencia said, but it remained unclear how he sustained the wound. The morning after the shooting, a large blood stain was visible on the asphalt in the cul-de-sac where Pas was arrested.

Police struggled with Pas once he was on the ground, according to Wednesday’s statement. “Pas was on his stomach with his arms under his body, attempting to push himself up as officers tried to hold him down,” the statement said. “Pas continued to resist by tensing up and not complying with officers.”

After officers shocked Pas, put him in handcuffs and gave him Narcan, they “continued monitoring Pas until emergency medical personnel arrived,” the statement said. Medics arrived at 1:40 a.m. and began trying to save Pas’s life, the Sheriff’s Office wrote. He was taken to Providence Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 2:17 a.m.

Authorities published the names and experience of the officers involved in the death but did not specify their actions in the encounter. They are: Sgt. Matt Crosbie; Officer Frank Sedeno; Officer David Lamb; Officer Nick Madarus; Officer Joe Richards; Officer Jonathan Morgan; Officer Robert Moore; Officer Bradley Marweg; Officer Jerry Ellsworth.

Officials did not have an updated timeline of when they would release video from the officers’ body-worn cameras, which The Press Democrat has requested. State law requires such footage to be released within 45 days as long as it does not compromise the investigation.

You can reach Staff Writer Andrew Graham at 707-526-8667 or andrew.graham@pressdemocrat.com. On Twitter @AndrewGraham88

Andrew Graham

City of Santa Rosa, The Press Democrat 

As Sonoma County's largest city, Santa Rosas policy, politics, crime, and economy affect the lives of North Bay residents inside city limits and beyond in ways both obvious and unseen. I aim to document those impacts and give voice to city residents.

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