Death of man in DC security guards' custody called homicide


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WASHINGTON (AP) — The death of a special education teacher who died after being taken into custody by security guards at an apartment building in southeast Washington has been classified as a homicide.

A spokeswoman for the District of Columbia's chief medical examiner said Monday that homicide was the manner of death for 27-year-old Alonzo Smith.

The spokeswoman, Mikelle Devillier, says the cause of death was a heart attack complicated by "acute cocaine toxicity" and compression of his torso.

Smith died on Nov. 1. A police report says officers got a report about an assault at an apartment building and arrived to find him handcuffed by security guards. He was unconscious and not breathing.

D.C. police are investigating Smith's death. A department spokesman says police plan to issue a statement about the findings.

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