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Inocencio Cardenas Jr, 38
Donna, Texas
February 15, 2016

Agencies: Donna Police Department - Texas

Last updated: 7 months ago

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The incident took place at about 5:30 p.m. Monday when officers were called to the 200 block of South Seventh Street by Cardenas’ partner, who feared for his safety after she noticed he was in an altered state and could not calm him down. Cardenas had run out of their home.

The woman said she called 9-1-1 and asked for help because she feared Cardenas might hurt himself or get hit by a car, but at no point did she fear that he might hurt her.

She said he had issues with drugs, but even so, he was a good man, a good father and that in all their years together he had never been violent toward her in any way.

The day following his death, DPS Spokesman Sgt. Juan “Johnny” Hernandez said preliminary information suggested Cardenas died from a drug overdose.

“Preliminary information indicates that at approximately 6:02 p.m., a call was received by the Donna Police Department regarding a domestic issue and a possible overdose at a residence located on Seventh Street. Witnesses said they observed a 38-year-old man in a "delirious" state and "that he wasn’t in his right state of mind," a news release states.

But several days later, family and friends are still questioning the information released by authorities because of the accounts from neighbors who saw the arrest just outside Cardenas’ home.

Several people who witnessed the arrest told The Monitor the officers shocked Cardenas with a stun gun at least three times before he stopped moving.

Hernandez on Tuesday in a released statement said Cardenas became violent toward the officers, but neighbors deny the Donna man could even move after he was handcuffed and placed on his stomach.

“There were three officers on top of him,” said one neighbor in Spanish. The woman declined to identify herself in fear of police retaliation. “He wasn’t moving. You could just see him trying to move his head up.”

Moments later, neighbors said the man stopped moving altogether and that’s when emergency personnel were called. But by then it was too late. Efforts to revive the man were unsuccessful.

She said she was only asking for help for the man she knew as Daniel, the man she had been in love with for more than five years, and she said she didn’t think it would end the way it did.