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What Happened To Fouad Kaady: Witnesses describe police shooting

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Witnesses describe police shooting

from the Oregonian

Paul White was watering his wife's plants in his front yard when a naked, bloody man -- grunting, hooting, and "howling like a wolf," he said -- walked by his house. White, a 49-year-old recycler for Waste Connections, was taken aback. It was about 2 p.m. Sept. 8 -- a sunny day that would see the temperature hit 85 degrees. White, who lives in the 10400 block of Southeast 362nd Avenue, north of Sandy, said the man -- later identified as 27-year-old Fouad Kaady of Gresham -- was bleeding from a head wound and appeared "burnt." "The blood was running down his thighs," White said. "He was looking straight through me . . . like everybody else wasn't there." White told his story this week to a Clackamas County grand jury looking into Kaady's death at the hands of a Sandy police officer and a Clackamas County sheriff's deputy. He talked about the incident to the news media Wednesday. He said he didn't know what to think. Was the man on drugs or mentally ill? Kaady's family has theorized that he was crazed with pain from burns when a gasoline can in his car exploded, or that his bizarre behavior could be tied to a head injury. White also didn't know that Kaady's car had plowed into three cars and then burst into flames on nearby Bluff Road, or that Kaady had walked west through the woods before arriving at the road in front of White's house. White grabbed a board he had propped up near the corner of his house. "It scared the hell out of me," he said of the encounter. "I didn't know what I was up against." As White watched, Kaady continued walking north on 362nd. White noticed a woman driving a sport utility vehicle slowly follow as Kaady walked up the road. Kaady looked at White and then ran and jumped onto the roof of Elaine Thornlimb's Ford Explorer, hopping from the hood to the sunroof. Kaady, he said, jumped over the SUV "like it wasn't even there . . . like he had superstrength. His behavior was really off the wall. It was like he was imitating animals . . . flying like a bird." Thornlimb, a 46-year-old school librarian who lives nearby, said she followed Kaady for about a half-mile north on 362nd. At one point, he waved and smiled at her. She told the grand jury that Kaady's hair was matted and bloody and that skin was hanging from his arms. White walked into his neighbor's yard, keeping an eye on Kaady, who was heading north on 362nd toward Cottrell Elementary School where White's wife, Debra, worked. When Kaady was about one-tenth of a mile away -- across a dip in the road from where White stood -- a police car carrying Sandy police Officer William J. Bergin and Clackamas County sheriff's Deputy David E. Willard pulled up. Kaady by this time was sitting cross-legged in the road. After the officers shouted at him to get down, Kaady rolled onto his back, White said. The officers continued to shout at Kaady, telling him to lie on his stomach, but White thinks Kaady didn't comply because of the burns that ran down his right side. A few seconds later, White could see that the officers had fired a Taser at Kaady, who didn't appear to be affected by the 50,000-volt jolt. Kaady then jumped up onto the roof of the patrol car and stood there, hands at his side, White said. At no time, he said, was Kaady threatening or combative. He was unarmed. "That's when they shot him," White said. "I heard five shots." Kaady's body fell off the patrol car. "I don't think this will ever leave my mind," White said. Thornlimb told the grand jury that when Kaady sat down in the road, she told 9-1-1 dispatchers that he appeared to have given up. "I felt all along that the officers were there to help him," she said. "When they shot him, I drove home and sobbed for hours." Were the officers justified in shooting him, as police said, because they feared for their safety, and that Kaady was a threat to others? A grand jury is expected to come back with a decision today or Friday, said Greg Horner, Clackamas County assistant district attorney. Clackamas County officials routinely decline to comment on grand jury testimony.

1 comment:

Just Plain Archie said...

Any word from the autopsy on prior injuries or toxicology? Any word on what caused Mr. Kaady to have an accident in the first place? Any explanation for him being nude?

So far, there's not much in the way of details, is there?