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February 21, 2012
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NC cops followed policy as woman strangled self

Police freed her from the seatbelt and got her medical attention as soon as they realized what happened

By PoliceOne Staff

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Charlotte-Mecklenburg officers were cleared of wrongdoing last week in a woman's self-strangling inside a police cruiser.

Tanisha Williams, 18, has been in a coma since her December shoplifting arrest. The police report says Williams banged her head against a divider inside a police cruiser. Responding to her violent actions, officers went to retrieve a restraining device, according to the Charlotte Observer.  When they returned, she had wrapped a seatbelt around her neck in an attempt to strangle herself.

Police freed her from the seatbelt and got her medical attention as soon as they realized what happened, WCNC reported.  Because of Williams' hair and the low light inside the cruiser, it was unclear at first what she was doing, police said.

"Officers continued to ask Ms. Williams questions and after not getting a response from her, officers shined a flashlight on Ms. Williams' face and were able to see that the shoulder harness was wrapped around her neck," police said.

Williams' attorney said the findings of the internal investigation didn't surprise him.

Associated PressCopyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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