Angelo Quinto was a Navy veteran who died after an encounter with Antioch, California, police, his family says because an officer kneeled on the back of his neck for almost five minutes.
You can watch the video below, but be aware that it’s very disturbing. The John Burris Law Office released the video with this caption, “Angelo Quinto was unreasonably physically restrained and asphyxiated by Antioch police December 23rd 2020. He later died at the hospital.”
In the video, which shows only the aftermath of the encounter and doesn’t include the part with the knee, you see a police officer asking Quinto if he’s on medication as he lies unresponsive on the floor. Officers put his hands behind his back.
“What happened?” a woman says. The video is four minutes long. “I came from work. When I came home, he was sleeping,” she says.
Officers roll Quinto on his back on a gurney as Quinto remains motionless. “Does he have a pulse? What’s happening?” the woman says. “You didn’t see him take anything? No illegal drugs?” an officer asks. The woman says she has no idea because she just came from work.
The video then includes a reenactment.
A man in that portion of the video says an officer put a knee on the back of Quinto’s neck. They handcuffed him, and there was a knee, the man says. The man says that position was held for 4.5 to 5 minutes. Then, the paramedics came.
Some are drawing parallels between the Quinto case and the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
Here’s what you need to know:
Quinto Suffered From Mental Illness, His Family Says
According to the Cut, Quinto, 30, was a Navy veteran who suffered mental health issues. He lived in Antioch, California.
His family called police in December 2020 because he “showed erratic behavior,” the Cut reported. He died three days later at a hospital after an “encounter with the officers” who responded to the call, The Cut reported.
He pleaded with officers, “please don’t kill me,” The Cut reported.
He said ‘Please don’t kill me. Please don’t kill me,’” Quinto’s mother, Cassandra Quinto-Collins told KTVU. “I was there. I was watching them. I trusted them. I though they know what they’re doing.”
According to the television station an autopsy is still pending to determine the cause of death.
Police Say They Didn’t Use Physical Force
The Mercury News reported that police didn’t tell the public about the death for a month.
Antioch police Lt. John Fortner told The Mercury News that officers did handcuff Quinto but “didn’t use physical force like a taser, pepper spray, baton, or strikes to his body,” the newspaper reported, adding that police say officers had already called for an ambulance when Quinto “began experiencing a medical emergency.”
“They had the ambulance step up their response,” Fortner said to the newspaper. “(The ambulance) transported him to hospital, they stabilized him for three days and he unfortunately passed away.”
Quinto Was Born in the Philippines & Planned a New Career in Video Game Design
An online obituary says that Quinto “passed away on Saturday, December 26th at the age of 30. He is reunited with his cousin, his uncle, and some of his dear friends in heaven. Angelo was born in the Philippines, but moved to the United States (U.S.) in middle school. He graduated from Berkeley High School in 2008, and proceeded to attend Berkeley City College. He spent a year living in Houston, Texas before moving back to the Bay Area.”
The obit continues:
His creativity, humor, and drive will be missed greatly by his family and friends. He leaves behind his mother, Cassandra, his stepfather, Robert, his two younger siblings, Andrei and Isabella, and his close cousin, Miguel. As well, he is further survived by other close relatives and friends, who will remember his great ambition, his abundance of grand ideas and many talents, and his constant strive for happiness and success. The animals in his life, Clethorp, Toto, and Oliver, will never forget the love, care, and generosity he shared with them. He enjoyed fishing, drawing, creating, strategizing, cooking, and spending time with those he cared for.
According to the obituary,
He dreamt of having a career in the U.S. Navy, and worked long and hard to achieve that dream. In training, he took on a valuable leadership role and proved his bravery, as well as all the wonderful things he was capable of. Although honorably discharged for medical reasons, he tried to remain positive, and assured everyone that the Navy was not a closed chapter in his life. In the next months––and as a growing pandemic was to beset the world––he decided his next move was to explore another big dream of his. He worked tirelessly until his passing to start a career in online gaming. A true testament to his ambition, faith, and strength, he was driven to achieve his goal and value the journey to that achievement, as well as hopefully even venture into the world of video game design.
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