The Wake County District Attorney said she will not charge the police officers involved in the Jan. 17 death of Darryl Williams. 

Raleigh police officers used a stun gun on Williams several times during an arrest before the 32-year-old man became unresponsive. He died in police custody. A report earlier this month from the state Office of the Chief Medical Examiner found the death to be a homicide.

What You Need To Know

  •  No police officers will be charged in the death of Darryl Williams, Wake County District Attorney Lorrin Freeman said Wednesday

  •  Williams died Jan. 17 after struggling with police. Body camera video and the police report show officers used a stun gun on him several times

  •  The state's Office of the Chief Medical Examiner found the death to be a homicide

  • Williams is heard on the body camera video telling police he had a heart problem

"He’s no threat to them. He’s running away from them. They Tase him four times, even after he says, ‘I have heart problems,’ they Tase him again. If that’s not cruel and unusual punishment, I don’t know what is," said Ben Crump, an attorney for Williams' family. 

But District Attorney Lorrin Freeman said her office reviewed the use of Tasers in this case and came to a different conclusion. 

"We looked specifically at the use of force, which was the deployment of the Taser. Each of the deployments of the Taser were for less than five seconds, each of them were following multiple commands and opportunities for Mr. Williams to comply with law enforcement," Freeman said.

"State law allows law enforcement to use force in bringing someone into custody, especially when there is some risk of physical assault or injury to the officers themselves," she said. "While it certainly was tragic and unfortunate, it does not give rise to criminal charges for the officers have used force in this situation."

Williams was in a car parked outside a sweepstakes parlor in southeast Raleigh when police approached him and a passenger at about 2 a.m., according to Raleigh police and body camera video released by the department.

Police said they found a “white powdery substance consistent with the appearance of cocaine" in a folded dollar bill in Williams’ pocket. 

Both Williams and a passenger in the car tried to run from police, the department said, but officers caught up quickly with Williams. Officers used stun guns on Williams as he struggled to escape, according to video and the police. 

The video shows Williams telling police he had problems with his heart. 

Williams became unresponsive a couple of minutes after his arrest and stopped breathing, a police report states. Video shows officers giving Williams CPR and calling for an ambulance. Williams was pronounced dead at a hospital at about 3 a.m.

"It is an extrajudicial killing, it’s a state-sanctioned killing of yet again another unarmed Black person," Crump said Wednesday.

"These DAs continue to come up with justification for white police officers and Black police officers to kill Black and brown people unjustly," he said.

Freeman said she has spoken with Williams' mother. 

“She’s lost a son, and there is nothing this office is going to do, regardless of what the decision made would be, that would change that. They have every right to be grieving the loss of this son. But it’s important in these cases that due diligence is exercised. I take these cases very seriously," Freeman said.

Six Raleigh police officers were put on leave after the incident. It will be up to the Raleigh Police Department to reinstate the officers.