A Tampa man expired in the course of an arrest by the St. Petersburg Police Wednesday morning.
According to reports, officers were attempting to arrest Joshua George Dove, a thirty-five-year-old homeless man on a sidewalk on Fifth Avenue North near a homeless shelter. The officers were dispatched to investigate alleged drug dealing in the vicinity, and ordered the group of homeless people they encountered to disburse. All of the assemblage obeyed except for Dove, whom officers say became confrontational, leading to their decision to take him into custody. The officers say Dove was resisting arrest and began struggling with them, including allegedly attempting to strike officer Patrick McGovern.
Another officer, namely Bradley Lightfield, joined the altercation. The department says McGovern employed a Taser in the course of the affray, shocking Dove twice before succeeding in securing his wrists in handcuffs. They said Dove collapsed as they were shackling him, at which point they called in a St. Petersburg Fire Rescue crew. The crew attempted first aid upon Dove as they transported him to St. Anthony’s Hospital, but to no avail. He was pronounced dead upon his arrival.
Dove’s arrest and death are currently under investigation by the department, the state’s attorney general, and the medical examiner. Both officers reported no injury from the incident, and both returned to duty as before.
No drugs were found upon Dove’s person at the time of his death.