Overdose of drugs killed ‘Tased’ suspect

ST. MARTINVILLE – The St. Martin Parish Coroner’s Office said a man who died several hours after being shot with a Taser by a deputy sheriff was actually killed by a drug overdose.

An autopsy performed on Othello Pierre, 23, indicated that Pierre died as a result of high levels of cocaine, marijuana and alcohol in his system, according to the office of Dr. Daniel Wiltz.

At 6:38 p.m. on July 4, the St. Martin Parish Sheriff’s Office received a 911 call regarding a disturbance on Cypress Island Highway. Deputies responding to the scene encountered Pierre, who attempted to flee from the scene.

Pierre had an outstanding warrant for his arrest at the time.

A Taser electroshock weapon was used in an attempt to subdue him, and he was apprehended a short time later following a foot pursuit.

Pierre was transported to a local hospital where he died around 11 p.m.

Preliminary reports available at that time indicated that the suspect had several narcotics in addition to alcohol his system. Witnesses on the scene indicated to deputies that the suspect had been up for several days prior to the incident.

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