CONTENT WARNING: This article discusses mental health issues.
A Melbourne man whose shocking arrest on Sunday prompted a formal Victoria Police investigation is now in an induced coma, according to his father.
Speaking to 3AW’s Neil Mitchell on Monday, Glenn Atkins said his son, Timothy Atkins, 32, required a CT scan after his confrontation with police in Epping.
“They put him in a coma so they could do a CT scan on his head, because he was stomped on or kicked by police,” Atkins said.
He is expected to be drawn out of the coma today.
Bystander footage of the arrest, obtained by 7NEWS, shows police driving a car into Atkins, who was thrown several metres.
A separate clip shows six officers surrounding Atkins, who was lying on a median strip. One male officer appears to lift his foot and kick Atkins in the head.
The infuriated father of a man who was stomped on by police while suffering a mental health episode wants the officers stood down.
— Nine News Melbourne (@9NewsMelb) September 14, 2020
Glenn Atkins told 3AW his son lives with bipolar disorder, and attempted to seek treatment at Epping’s Northern Hospital before his arrest.
He left the hospital after more than a day waiting for admission to a psychiatric ward, prompting hospital staff to alert police over fears for his safety.
“Police had no right to do what they did,” Atkins told 3AW.
The Age reports the family intends to launch legal action against Victoria Police.
Speaking to Nine News, Atkins said the officers involved in the arrest “need to be held to justice and accountable.”
In a statement, Victoria Police said officers were alerted to a man acting “erratically”.
“Upon arrival the male allegedly became aggressive and damaged a police vehicle whilst attempting to avoid arrest,” the spokesperson said, alleging the man assaulted a police officer during the “highly dynamic” incident.
Victoria Police said the incident has been referred to the in-house Professional Standards Command, which oversees complaints about police conduct.
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