A San Diego Police Officer arrived a short time later and attempted to take the suspect into custody. The suspect resisted the officer’s attempts to handcuff him and began struggling until two more officers arrived to assist. The officers used a combination of physical force and strikes to the arms to get the suspect handcuffed.
The officers believed the suspect was demonstrating symptoms of excited delirium and requested paramedics. As the paramedics began assessing the suspect’s condition, he became unresponsive and life-saving measures were initiated. The suspect was transported to a local hospital, but unfortunately was pronounced deceased at 4:49 p.m.
As is the case with any potential in-custody death, investigators from the San Diego Police Homicide Unit were called to handle the investigation. From the initial witness interviews, SDPD learned the suspect apparently broke down the rear fence to the residence and entered an open rear door. Two adult residents were upstairs, while their 9-year-old daughter was asleep downstairs.
The male resident came downstairs when he heard the commotion and confronted the suspect. A fight ensued and the resident punched the suspect twice, rendering him unconscious. The resident kicked the suspect, who woke up and ran out of the house and began displaying bizarre behavior until the police arrived and the additional struggle ensued.
The resident and witnesses believed the suspect was under the influence of drugs. There was another radio call in the same area a short time earlier, which is believed to be related. That caller said the male was attempting to open doors to residences in the 2900 block of Belknap Way.
The suspect has been identified as 40-year-old Buddie Thomas Nichols, originally from Indiana.
Three San Diego Police Officers were involved in the incident. They have been identified as; Brian Kashouty – a six-year veteran, Scott Springer – a four-year veteran, and Taylor Davoren – a 1 1⁄2 year veteran. All of the officers were assigned to Western Division.
Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to call the Homicide Unit at 619-531-2293 or Crime Stoppers at 888-580-8477.