December 21, 2009

News Release

For Immediate Release

Police Investigating Death of Michael Hawkins

The Springfield Police Department is investigating the death of a suspect who was arrested Sunday morning just before 10:00 a.m. for burglary. Michael D. Hawkins, 39, of Springfield was arrested at the Eagles Lodge Motel, 2611 N. Glenstone, after police were called there in reference to a person hiding in a storage room and refusing to come out.

After police arrived they found Hawkins hiding in a crawl space just above the storage room. Police attempted to talk Hawkins down, but he refused to leave the crawl space. Officers entered the crawl space, along with a police service dog. The dog engaged the suspect in the crawl space. During the engagement the dog broke through the ceiling and fell on to the balcony. The suspect was able to hold on to a rafter and climb back into the crawl space.

After Hawkins got back into the crawl space officers located him, and after he refused to obey several police commands to surrender, a Taser was deployed. Hawkins then was taken into custody.

Once in custody police had Hawkins transported by ambulance to the hospital for the dog bite that he received on his upper thigh. After arriving at the hospital Hawkins died.

An autopsy is pending to determine the cause of death.

SPD Case Number: 09-55404

Media Contact: Interim Chief Ron Hartman, phone: 417-864-1782; Release authorized by: Interim Chief Ron Hartman

springfield police department

Springfield Police Department

Headquarters: 321 E. Chestnut Expy., Springfield, MO 65802
South District Station: 2620 W. Battlefield Rd., Springfield, MO 65807
417-864-1810 •