WAGONER COUNTY, Okla. — A mother is speaking out as she continues to battle in a civil rights lawsuit against Wagoner County.
Pam Krueger filed the suit in 2021 against the Sheriff’s office after her son, Jeffery Krueger, died in their custody in 2019.
Investigation records show that deputies conducted a traffic stop of Jeffery because they said they saw him swerving and he was not compliant when they approached the car, so they pointed their weapons at him.
Body camera video shows deputies struggling with Krueger for several minutes, trying to get him cuffed. He was tased multiple times and Krueger is clearly bleeding heavily.
He is eventually put on a stretcher and taken to the hospital, where a medical examiner’s report says he died of Cardiac Dysrhythmias due to probable acute psychoses in the setting of physical exertion.
It says he had no drugs or alcohol in his system.
The lawsuit claims the arrest was unconstitutional and that Krueger had bipolar disorder and should not have been treated in that way.
The OSBI investigated the incident and District Attorney Jack Thorpe decided not to press criminal charges on anyone involved due to that report.
He wrote in a letter when he made the decision in 2019, “The non-deadly force utilized by these deputies upon arrestee Jeffery Krueger was justified...”
It goes on to say, “Krueger resisted arrest and fought both officers for several minutes” and that “Krueger attempted to attack Phillips and attempted to possess his firearm.”
“They failed him, the citizens of wagoner county. They failed the state. They need to be held accountable,” said Pam.
Pam says she’ll continue to fight until this suit is settled and she doesn’t want this to happen to any other family.
“It’s very difficult when more incidents like Jeffery’s happen and we see them on the news and in the newspapers and we still it’s still happening to people,” said Pam
“He had the best smile ever. He was kind and caring,” said Pam.
Krueger’s attorney is Mark Lyons.
“They’re supposed to have training on people who have emotional problems or people who are mentally ill,” said Lyons, “If they would have shown the least bit of humanity to him, we wouldn’t be here.”
Lyons said it is a disservice to the good police officers who try to do a good job.
In 2019, Sheriff Chris Elliot made a statement regarding the body cam footage from Jeffery Krueger’s arrest.
“I didn’t see anything in the body cam footage that would give me an alarm that the deputies did anything inappropriately,” said Elliot.