New details on Colorado Springs police encounter before man's death

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - A 27-year-old man died about a week after being arrested by Colorado Springs police last month, and the department released information Wednesday about what led to the encounter.

Jeffrey Melvin died on May 2 and was hit by four Taser cartridges, but his official cause of death hasn't been released by the El Paso County Coroner's Office yet.

According to CSPD, at around 12:30 a.m. on April 26, officers were called to an apartment complex in the 3300 block of East Fountain Boulevard due to a report of people fighting.

Officers went to the building and walked past a man leaving the building-- later identified as Melvin -- while on their way to the apartment. Jordan Bruno answered the door and told officers he had been in a fight with some friends who had since left the apartment. Bruno said two females, an adult and a juvenile, were inside and then gave permission to the officers to enter the apartment.

The officers talked with the juvenile female and attempted to contact her father but weren't able to. They remained inside while trying to figure out what to do with her. It's not clear how the adult female was related.

CSPD said that at this point, about 20 minutes into the incident, their contact with the three people inside was "completely cordial and non-adversarial."

An officer in the hallway saw Melvin trying to get inside the building, and then Melvin ran toward the apartment where Bruno and the females were. Police said Melvin blocked the door from the inside and was told by an officer still inside the apartment to step away from the door.

The other officer came in and Melvin was told he was being detained. At that point, Melvin began struggling and wouldn't comply.

CSPD says officers used pepper spray and deployed Taser cartridges twice to try and stop Melvin, but they were ineffective.

Police say that at that point, Melvin called to Bruno for help, and Bruno began approaching the officers with a "balled-up" fist. He was sprayed with Capsicum and fell to the ground.

The struggle continued and Melvin tried to run toward the door. At that point, the officer used his Taser twice. Police said the second cartridge got Melvin to the ground, but he then quickly got up and ran out of the building.

Officers ran after him across Fountain Boulevard, but Melvin eventually slowed and went down on his knees after about 36 seconds.

Melvin was placed in handcuffs and held on the ground. He complained to the officers that he had difficulty breathing due to asthma, so the officers let him stay on the ground while they called for medical assistance. It took about four minutes for medical personnel to arrive.

Melvin was taken to a local hospital and was charged with resisting/interference with a public official. Police later learned that he had an active warrant for attempted second-degree murder in connection with a domestic violence case from early 2018. Bruno was also charged with resisting/interference with a public official.

Police say Melvin's condition worsened and he died in the hospital on May 2. An autopsy was conducted and the official cause of death is still pending.

According to police, medical staff tested Melvin and found the presence of alcohol, marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine, and heroin in his system.

The incident was captured by the officers' body cameras, but police said no further information would be released. The Internal Affairs Section is investigating.

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