Safford police officers were dispatched to the 400 block of Highway 70 at approximately 8:00 pm on Monday, December 3rd, in reference to a man who was dancing on the sidewalk with no shirt on. The reporting party expressed concern that the man might dance out into the street and get hit by a car.
An officer made contact with the man and recognized him from prior contact. The officer reportedly found the man’s behavior odd because the temperature was in the 40s and the man was not wearing a shirt.
After requesting a check for wants and warrants, the officer exited his patrol vehicle and approached the man. As the officer approached, the man placed his right hand into his pocket and when he removed it, a piece of rolled tin foil emerged from the top of the pocket. This type of foil is generally used to smoke illegal drugs. The officer asked the man about the foil and the man said that he had found it in the dirt The officer told the man to give him the foil but the man refused. At this point, dispatch confirmed several warrants for the man and he was handcuffed and searched. The officer removed the tin foil that had residue and burn marks. The officer also found a small tube, believed to be used to ingest the substance from the tin foil.
According to the police report the man was having full conversations with himself, answering his own questions and responding to his own conversation. The man was placed in the back seat of the patrol vehicle to be taken to the jail. On the way, the man began to bang his head against the security cage and cross beams mounted in the back of the vehicle. The officer stopped the car, removed the man and placed him on the ground in an effort to get him to stop hitting his head. By this time the man’s forehead was bleeding. An ambulance was called and the man was taken to the emergency room at Mount Graham Regional Medical Center.
While the man was being treated an evaluated by medical staff, he continued to talk to himself. During his two hour stay, he would talk, then start to laugh, followed by crying and then would appear to be in a neutral state. It’s unclear if his behavior was caused by drugs or mental illness. The man received stitches on his forehead for the self inflicted laceration.
After he was discharged from the hospital the man was transported to the Graham County Jail and booked on the two local arrest warrants. He was also cited for possession of drug paraphernalia.