'I can't breathe': after Michigan man dies in police custody, judge rules officers' actions justified

It's been five years since Jack Marden's final words were uttered when he was in custody in Midland County. The entire fight between Marden and officers was caught on video.

"I can't breathe. I can't breathe," Marden said in the bodycam video.

The 56-year-old man was arrested in February 2015 on a felonious assault charge but couldn't post the $100,000 bond. He had been taking medication for depression but was off the medicine when he was in jail for six days.

"Dude, we want you to breathe but if you keep fighting us...come on, man," an officer said.

On February 13, 2015, he wrestled with Midland County Officers. He was obviously struggling, he ripped off his jumpsuit, urinated on it and wiped urine and feces on his naked body.  At one point, Jack grabbed the testicles of one of the officers.

Officers told him to relax and to stop resisting. They also had a taser if they needed it. When he spit on the officers, they put a spit hood on him but that seemed to make it worse.

"Let's just keep him just like that so there's no weight on his chest or anything," an officer said.

Another officer could be heard saying he was worried about Marden's ability to breathe. 

After nine minutes, he wasn't breathing and he died in jail.

Jules Olsman, the attorney for his estate, said he told them he couldn't breathe but they did nothing to make it easier for him.

"Despite his repeated statements that he couldn't breathe, couldn't breathe, they kept on telling him to relax, relax, and chill out," Olsman said.

After Marden's death, his family sued the police officers for excessive force. But the judge threw the case out saying that the police officers use "reasonable" force.

Olsman said the case was worth millions but the judge noted that police officers are adequately trained and the use of the spit hood was appropriate. The judge also ruled the team followed policies.

Olsman agrees that police can use reasonable force to subdue someone but officers created the problem.

"Here, they created the situation that they went to subdue," he said.

Jack's attorney appealed the judge's ruling but the case was then settled for $500,000, ending the litigation.

Still, Olsman said the police were "100%" wrong.