A Northwest Florida man is in critical condition after reportedly being tazed, as he tried to flee from authorities.
A routine traffic stop for a seatbelt infraction on Sunday evening turned into so much more for Houston County Sheriff’s Deputy Robert Reichert and the suspect, 27-year-old Nicholas Cody.
Deputy Reichert noticed a small bag with a white substance; Cody attempted to flee when the taser was first fired.
"Deputy Reichert asked him about the bag; as a struggle ensued with the subject in the cab of the pickup truck, Deputy Reichert activated his taser at which time only one probe struck the suspect," said Sheriff Andy Hughes with Houston County.
At that point, Cody dove out of the truck and ran toward the Dollar General on Highway 231 with Deputy Reichert in pursuit. He then jumped a fence into the Tanglewood Apartments, and then the deputy redeployed the taser, this time both, prongs striking. During the struggle, Cody was hit with an additional charge.
After Cody went into respiratory arrest, Deputy Reichert , who is trained in CPR, along with another bystander, attempted to resuscitate the suspect with paramedics en route.
As of Monday, he is in critical condition in a Dothan hospital according to the sheriff.
Sheriff Hughes said, "I'm not satisfied that this came as a result of the taser. There have been deaths involving tasers across the country and most of the time, it's been shown to be from a pre existing medical condition or due to the fact that the subject had previously ingested cocaine."
The white powdery substance that Deputy Reichert first noticed in the cab of the car did test positive for the presence of cocaine. Currently, there is a warrant out for his arrest for possession of a controlled substance and resisting arrest.
There are no current reports of what was or wasn’t in Cody’s system at the time of the incident on Sunday, but at last check, he was still listed in critical condition. He has two drug cases pending; one in Jackson County, Florida and one in Dothan, both involving possession of marijuana.