Omaha police report death in custody over bowling disruption call

OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) – Omaha police reported a death in custody Thursday evening after officers responded to a disturbance at an Omaha bowling alley.

Eric Liao, 30, was pronounced dead Thursday afternoon after being taken to the Methodist hospital. On a 911 call reporting a disturbance inside the West Lanes Bowling Center off North 72nd, the caller told dispatch “a man with autism was out of control, biting his caregiver and being held back by staff.” according to the press release.

The adult was later identified as Liao, and officers said the dispatch heard screams in the background when calling 911.

Arriving at the bowling alley, an employee was restraining Liao to the ground and witnesses told officers that Liao “was aggressive and bit people before being restrained.” Liao was handcuffed by one of the first policemen and they noticed that he was unresponsive.

Immediately, the police began CPR, and other officers quickly offered to help. As stated in the release, looking at the body camera images, [it] “Showed that the officers did not use force or attempt to keep Liao down. “

The incident is being investigated by the Omaha Police Officer Investigation Team, the Nebraska State Patrol and the Sarpy County Sheriff’s Office.

Copyright 2021 WOWT. All rights reserved.

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