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Woman takes Dolton officials to court over father’s death in custody at hospital

Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn.

Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn | Sun-Times file photo

A woman is taking Dolton officials to court over the death of her father, who was shocked with a stun gun while he was in police custody Sunday at a south suburban hospital.

Solomon Agwomoh, 51, was taken in custody to Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn for treatment after a crash, according to a lawsuit filed by his daughter Wednesday in Cook County Circuit Court. His injuries from the crash weren’t considered life-threatening, but the hospital stay ended in his death.

The suit seeks more than $50,000 in damages from the village of Dolton, alleging that misconduct by an officer in the unjustified use of a Taser led to Agwomoh’s death.

Agwomoh was suspected to have been drinking before he was involved in the crash about 12:40 a.m. at Cottage Grove Avenue and East Sibley Boulevard, according to Dolton Police Chief Robert M. Collins Jr. After being taken to Christ, he became uncooperative and combative with the hospital staff that was treating him.

An officer ultimately intervened and used a Taser on Agwomoh, Collins said. The Taser was ineffective, and the hospital staff then used “some sort of sedative” to calm him down. Shortly after, Agwomoh became unresponsive and died.

Just before he was shocked with the Taser, Agwomoh underwent a CT scan and became agitated when he was removed from the machine, according to the suit, which deemed the use of “lethal electric current” as police misconduct and made no mention of the possible use of a sedative.

An autopsy Sunday didn’t immediately rule on the cause and manner of Agwomoh’s death pending further investigation, the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office said.

Agwomoh, of south suburban South Holland, had four children, according to the suit.

The officer involved was placed on administrative leave while the Illinois State Police Public Integrity Task Force investigates Agwomoh’s death, Collins said.

A spokeswoman at Christ Medical Center declined to comment on the incident and directed questions to Dolton police. State police didn’t respond to a request for a comment Wednesday night.