Rochester officer faces departmental charges in death of Daniel Prude

Rochester officer faces departmental charges in death of Daniel Prude
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A Rochester, N.Y., police officer is facing departmental charges related to the death of Daniel Prude.

The Rochester Police Department said in a press release Thursday that it determined “potential grounds for legal recourse” against Officer Mark Vaughn, according to a CBS affiliate in Albany.

"The Department fully supports Officer Vaughn’s right to due process and to defend himself against the charges, of which no pre-determined outcome has been put in place. A formal hearing will be scheduled in the future,” read the press release, which was published by the news outlet.


No other officers have been charged in the case.

The Hill has reached out to the Rochester Police Department for comment.   

Prude, a Black man, died in March last year a week after being detained for running naked through the streets.

The case sparked national outrage after footage of the incident released the following September showed officers pinning him down and placing a “spit hood” over his head.

Prude’s cause of death was determined to be “complications of asphyxia in the setting of physical restraint.” Police initially said he died of a drug overdose. 

According to video reviewed by The New York Times, Vaughn leaned on Prude’s head for at least 68 seconds.

In February, New York Attorney General Letitia James (D) announced that a grand jury declined to bring charges against the seven officers involved, including Vaughn. In May, Prude’s children filed a federal lawsuit against the city of Rochester.

The release of the footage came as the nation was on edge following the police killing of George Floyd in May 2020, though Prude died before then.

After the footage was released, Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren (D) fired former Police Chief La'Ron Singletary and replaced him with acting Chief Cynthia Herriott-Sullivan.