When Mesquite police arrived at a local middle school late on a summer night in 2013, Graham Dyer was pounding his head on the ground. Earlier, witnesses reported seeing him ram his head into a building. A friend explained that the 18-year-old was experiencing a bad LSD trip.
Police have a legal duty to care for their prisoners, and after Dyer was handcuffed, two medics were called to the scene. But their evaluation was brief — no report of his exam was created — and they quickly left. One Mesquite officer later termed the medics “worthless.”
The officers nevertheless have cited the examination to demonstrate they provided adequate care for the teenager, whose in-custody death the American-Statesman profiled earlier this year. But newly filed court documents show that after the medics left, police continued to observe Dyer acquire an accumulation of serious injuries. Time and again, they failed to take action that could have saved his life.