A 37-year-old Virginia woman who was being held at the Fairfax County jail has died just five days after officers used a stun gun on her while in police custody.
The woman, identified as Natasha McKenna, was removed from life support Sunday, according to the Washington Post. Police resorted to the Taser after she allegedly refused to comply with deputies’ commands and resisted them during the preparation to transfer her to Alexandria, the sheriff’s office said.
McKenna was eventually restrained and checked by medical personnel, but when she was moved to another part of the jail for transport she experienced a medical emergency, the sheriff’s office said.
Emergency responders were called and deputies administered life-saving care, authorities said.
Fairfax City Fire Chief Dave Rohr said crews were called to the jail about 11:20 a.m. Tuesday.
Rohr said McKenna was suffering from cardiac arrest and was resuscitated on the way to Inova Fairfax Hospital. She was placed on life support there.
When asked by NBC Washington how many times McKenna was stunned, Lt. Steve Elbert declined to specify.
Elbert said minutes passed between when McKenna was stunned and her medical emergency but didn’t know how many. “It was not an immediate thing,” he said.
Elbert declined to say how many times the deputy stunned McKenna and where on her body she was hit. He also declined to elaborate about how she resisted the deputies trying to transport her.
The incident is currently under investigation by the sheriff’s office, but will be turned over to the Fairfax County police.
In a statement Sunday, Fairfax County Sheriff Stacey Kincaid said her office was fully cooperating with the investigation.
“We anticipate a prompt and comprehensive investigation and will continue to update our website as new information becomes available,” Kincaid said.
Kincaid declined to answer additional questions about the incident when interviewed at her office Friday but said she wanted to be “transparent” and would release additional information as warranted.
Fairfax County police spokesman Bud Walker declined to comment on the investigation, saying, “We are just beginning.”
McKenna had been held at the county jail since Jan. 26 on a charge of assault on an officer.