March 15, 1995 in City

Autopsy Released On Man Killed By Police

By The Spokesman-Review
 

A mentally ill man swallowed several razor blades and cut his wrists before three Spokane police officers shot him to death last week, according to autopsy results.

Blaine Dalrymple was hit by five bullets, including two that severed arteries, said Dr. Dexter Amend, Spokane County coroner. Either of the two was enough to kill the 38-year-old man, Amend said.

Amend described the cuts on Dalrymple’s wrists as “relatively superficial … In time, they could have killed him.”

The razor blades in Dalrymple’s stomach eventually would have cut through his intestines or stomach, said Amend, who didn’t know how many blades examiners found.

Toxicology reports are not finished, so Amend could not say whether Dalrymple had taken drugs or alcohol before he locked himself in the bathroom in his mother’s South Hill apartment March 8. Jean Dalrymple called police, saying she feared her son would hurt her or kill himself.

Police said they tried talking Dalrymple out of the bathroom, and sprayed pepper gas under the bathroom door when they heard him breaking glass. Then they kicked in the door and immediately sprayed him with more of the gas.

Dalrymple appeared unfazed by the gas, police said. The three officers fired from a distance of less than eight feet, as Dalrymple lunged at them with a nine-inch shard of broken mirror.

Dalrymple died before paramedics arrived.

Dalrymple spent six years at Eastern State Hospital after he was charged with second-degree robbery in 1981. Psychologists told a judge he was paranoid schizophrenic and unable to stand trial.

Amend said Dalrymple was hospitalized in Sacred Heart Medical Center’s psychiatric wing in July 1994, then spent another four days at Eastern State Hospital. He was diagnosed with anti-social behavior, Amend said.

Patients that exhibit such behavior “have great suspicions and fears and great anger,” Amend said.

Dalrymple took medication for a short time after his release, Amend said. But staff at Spokane Community Mental Health told the coroner he stopped showing up for the medicine in September 1994.

“They lost track of him, was the term they used,” Amend said.

Dalrymple had a history of abusing amphetamines, cocaine, morphine and marijuana, Amend said. Court documents show he also had abused alcohol.


Thoughts and opinions on this story? Click here to comment >>

Get stories like this in a free daily email