The Texas Rangers are currently investigating an in custody death that occurred early Monday morning in Texarkana.
On April 13, 2020 around 3:06 AM, Bowie County Deputies Zach Kennington and Lieutenant Curtis Cole were dispatched to a prowler in the 300 block of County Road 2002 New Boston, Texas. This call was changed to a disturbance while the deputies were still on the way to this call and the suspect was named as Michael Haywood.
When Deputy Kennington arrived, he spoke with the reporting person who informed him that the suspect had been offered a ride home but he had refused the offer. The reporting person also told Deputy Kennington that Mr. Haywood had been consuming alcohol and suffers from mental illness. Deputy Kennington spoke with Mr. Haywood who agreed to accept a ride home from him.
During the ride home Mr. Haywood began to act erratic and refused to get out of Deputy Kennington’s patrol unit at his home. Mr. Haywood broke the door handle off Deputy Kennington’s unit during his resistance to keep the door shut. Mr. Haywood was then arrested Criminal Mischief for breaking this door handle.
Deputy Kennington decided to attempt to transport Mr. Haywood to jail unrestrained to keep from any further confrontation with him due to his mental state. While driving to the jail, Mr. Haywood became more belligerent and began attempting to get out of the vehicle while it was moving.
Deputy Kennington requested assistance and pulled over to secure Mr. Haywood. Mr. Haywood was still uncooperative and had be placed in hand and leg restraints. He was then transported to the Bi-State jail.
A short time later, Deputy Kennington was notified that Mr. Haywood was unresponsive in the jail, that CPR was being performed on him, and Life Net personnel had been called. None of these efforts were successful and Mr. Haywood was pronounced deceased.
Texas Ranger Josh Mason was notified of this death and responded to conduct the investigation which is ongoing.