WATCH: NYPD tased Queens man 7 times before he died, newly-released bodycam footage shows

1010 WINS Newsroom
August 12, 2020 - 12:27 pm

NEW YORK (1010 WINS) -- A group of NYPD officers tased an unarmed Queens man seven times before he died during a confrontation in June, body camera footage released by the department on Tuesday shows. 

A passerby called 911 after George Zapantis, 29, got into an altercation with his upstairs neighbors in Whitestone.

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Zapantis’ neighbors told police he went up to their 25-year-old son with a sword, but told officers they should wait until Zapantis’ mother was home before they confronted him, as he had a history of mental illness.

Police showed up anyway and found Zapantis inside the home wearing a gladiator outfit with a sword at his waist.

NYPD officials said the officers tased Zapantis and brought him to the ground because he charged at them with the sword in his hand, but the video released Tuesday shows that he wasn’t holding the sword. 

At some point during the altercation, Zapantis says he cannot breathe. Later on in the video, an officer asks if Zapantis has a pulse. 

“I think so,” one officer says. “We don’t know if he’s responsive right now,” another officer adds.