Man swallows drugs, dies after police take him into custody

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AUSTIN (KXAN) – A man in his 30s died Sunday morning after he was handcuffed by police when they responded to a call early Saturday about a man who had swallowed a large amount of drugs, said the Austin Police Department.

Police responded to the call about the man, identified as Chris Givens, 33, at about 6:56 a.m. Saturday morning in the 500 block of Deen Avenue just east of North Lamar Boulevard and south of East Rundberg Lane. They were told that he had consumed the drugs and was showing signs of distress.

Austin-Travis County EMS and the Austin Fire Department also responded.

Police said that based on their training, they believed Givens was under the influence of a narcotic or other substance. They said for their safety and that of others at the scene, they handcuffed him.

While handcuffed, police said his condition quickly deteriorated and medics transported him to the hospital. During the ambulance ride, Givens went into cardiac arrest.

He died Sunday morning at 11:28 a.m. Police said they consider this an “in-custody death.”

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