Aspiring rapper Richard "Lucky" Kokenos, 27 (pictured), of Warren, Mich., was detained by police Saturday, September 19, around 12:30 a.m. outside a neighbor's home after an apparent attempt to break in to the house. According to family members, late Friday night Kokenos reacted to what may have been a drug overdose by running out of the house barefoot and beating on neighbors' doors, yelling for help. At first he asked to use the phone, but by the time he reached the last door his condition had deteriorated to the point that he was pounding on the doors and windows and throwing his body against the door. The terrified neighbor called 911.
According to police, they detained Kokenos and put him in the squad car, tasing him when he broke out of the cruiser. Kokenos then suffered a cardiac arrest and died.
According to a witness, Kokenos was on the ground when police tased him. "The police said Richard, stay on the ground and do not get up. They told him several times. They were telling him if he didn't stay down they would have to tase him," said the woman who didn't want to be identified. Family friend Laurie Johnson told a different story, "From what I've heard they tased him, cuffed him, put him in the car, let him out the car and tased him twice more." Kokenos mother, Finettie Hawkins, 52, believes his actions were a cry for help and that police should have helped her son rather than arresting him.