Toxicology Report Says Man Who Died In CMPD Custody Had Drugs In His System

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A toxicology report sent from the North Carolina Medical Examiner’s Office says Harold Easter had drugs, including cocaine and opioids, in his system.

Easter died while in the custody of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police officers.

The report says Easter had Benzoylecgonine, Cocaine metabolite, Levamisole, Lidocaine, and Opiates in his system when he died in police custody earlier this year.

Read below for more details.

Original Story (Posted January 28, 2020):

CHARLOTTE, N.C. —   An emotional plea from friends and family of a man who died in police custody. They’re calling for an outside agency to investigate Harold Easter’s death.

“His last words were probably somebody please help me. They allowed this to happen. So you take this back to your Chief, your Mayor and everybody else,” says Easter’s friend Gemini Boyd.

CMPD says the 41-year-old died in police custody on Sunday at a local hospital, after being arrested Thursday on drug and traffic charges. During that time, he suffered a medical emergency. Officers administered aid and called for Medic. But, Easter died three days later. No word yet on what caused his death.

“A great father, a great brother, a great son,” says Easter’s sister Andrell Mackey.

Five officers with CMPD are now on administrative leave:
-Sgt. Nicolas Vincent
-Ofc. Brentley Vinson
-Ofc. Michael Benfield
-Ofc. Michael Joseph
-Ofc. Shon Sheffield

CMPD says officers being placed on administrative leave is standard procedure for any in-custody death investigation. The officers involved in the incident are placed on administrative leave to ensure their actions were consistent with the CMPD’s policies and procedures.

The SBI has not been requested to investigate.