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'They should’ve brought mental health services': Valley man hit with stun gun while holding baby, bodycam shows

Stephen Osborne's mother believed he was in the midst of a mental crisis. She said she regrets getting the police involved.

PHOENIX — The family of a Valley man is frustrated with law enforcement after a welfare check resulted in him being shocked with a stun gun while holding his 2-month-old daughter.

Partial body camera footage from the Phoenix Police Department recorded the March 15 encounter after Stephen Osborne's mother called police for help. PPD has not released the full video despite requests from 12 News. 

PPD said Osborne’s mother, Kat Blue, called the police requesting a welfare check after being pushed by Osborne during a verbal argument. Osborne also pushed his girlfriend while he was holding the infant, PPD said. 

“My son was having a mental health crisis,” Blue said. 

Osborne was tased after he refused to put his baby down, body camera footage shows. He instead squeezed the infant in a bear hug while officers tried to detain him. But Osborne said officers never told him he was under arrest.

Details from a police report made about the incident said that Osborne barricaded himself in his home and when he came out, he was kicking officers while holding the infant. 

“I was literally instructed to come out with my baby for a wellness check,” Osborne said. “I don’t know, I don’t know how to breathe words to what happened." 

Blue said she regrets getting the police involved that day. 

“They put this baby at risk. They could’ve killed her,” Blue said.

The Phoenix Fire Department evaluated the baby and determined she didn't sustain injuries from the stun gun or the encounter, police said. The baby was left with her mother.

The police report also detailed that responding officers were concerned that if Osborne were to fall while holding the baby, she would have been severely injured by rocks in the front yard. 

Osborne’s family said the incident is an example of why police shouldn’t handle mental health situations.

“They should’ve brought mental health services,” Blue said.

Rob Robinson, a retired police lieutenant, said he believed the officers acted reasonably based upon the totality of circumstances -- Robinson was not able to view the full video. 

PPD took Osborne into custody for resisting arrest, assault against an officer and child endangerment. Maricopa County Attorney has not filed charges. 

“I just hope this kind of thing never happens again to anybody,” Osborne said.

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