Cocaine found in blood of man who died in Waddinxveen arrest
Paul Selier, a 39-year-old man who died after being arrested in Waddinxveen early this month, had cocaine in his blood. What influence the drug had on his death, is not yet clear, a spokesperson for the Public Prosecution Service said to NU.nl.
Exactly how much cocaine Selier had in his system, and when he had taken the drugs, is still under investigation. The cause of the Hague car dealer's death is also still unclear.
Selier, a father of two children living in The Hague, died after being arrested in Waddinxveen early on February 2nd. Video footage of the arrest seemed to show one police officer punching the man eight times in a 35-second period. An officer can be heard yelling "Cooperate, damn it!" in Dutch to the suspect.
The Public Prosecutor previously announced that Selier seemed to be "disturbed". A provisional autopsy report showed no indications that violence was used on his neck, and no breakages were found.
Last week newspaper AD reported that Selier also had a "dark side" - he had a history of cocaine abuse and the police were regularly called to deal with a meltdown. He was often taken to a police station to calm down, or to HMC Westeinde, where he came so often that the isolation room was redubbed the 'Selier room', according to the newspaper.
But just because he had some problems, doesn't mean he deserved dying in police custody, his friend John Medley said to AD. "You know, I'm also a father. What if that was my son who used something wrong? And I can't get him back home anymore because of such an arrest? I can't swallow that", he said.
Lawyer Richard Korver, who is representing Selier's family, confirmed that Selier had been arrested several times to Omroep West. About the story in AD he added: "That is a one sided and composed story. It distracts from the question of whether you have to arrest people like Paul Selier in this way."