Homicide ruled in death of Waimanalo man

Medical examiner: Dinnan, 35, died from asphyxia due to compression during prone restraint

 UPDATED 1:14 PM HST Jul 18, 2013
Stephen Dinnan

The Honolulu medical examiner has ruled that the death of 35-year-old Waimanalo man was a homicide.

The cause of death for Stephen Dinnan was asphyxia due to compression during prone restraint, according to the medical examiner.  Another significant injury was to his neck.

The medical examiner initially said Dinnan showed no signs of being assaulted.

"I think that's kind of crazy because there are all kinds of bruises and marks on Stephen's body.  He was battered about the throat, the arms and the back," said Bill Harrison, attorney for Dinnan's girlfriend Shardeah Serhant, in a June interview.

Last month, police say they went to a home on Ala Koa Street in Waimanalo after the owner of a stolen truck said he traced his cell phone to the location.

Neighbors said they saw Dinnan jump over a fence and put a child on a neighbor's back step.  They said officers told him to stop, but, instead, he jumped back over the fence and started running.

Police say they found drugs and drug paraphernalia on Dinnan.  The Honolulu Police Department released a statement saying  Dinnan "...fought off and resisted attempts to detain him."

Dinnan's family said he was unfairly beaten by police.  Dinnan's sister told KITV her brother was just in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Dinnan was declared brain dead the next morning and was taken off of life support.

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