Suspect collapses, dies in police custody in Alabama

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WIAT) — Across the country in the past year there has been a lot of tension between communities and police, but in the Crescent East neighborhood in Tuscaloosa, the death of 35-year-old Anthony Ware had their community on edge.

On Friday around 9:15 p.m., Tuscaloosa Police said they received an anonymous call to their dispatch, “that Anthony Dewayne Ware was sitting on the front porch with of a residence at Crescent East Apartments, the caller stated he was armed with a gun,” said Assistant Chief of Tuscaloosa Police, Ronnie Dunn.

That’s when residents said four police cars entered the neighborhood without any sirens or flashing lights, and “upon seeing them, Ant ran,” said one resident.

Residents in the Crescent East neighborhood said Anthony Ware was running down the street, before he went through an apartment into the wooded area, police then ran after him, but 45 minutes to an hour later, residents said when police dragged Ware out of the woods, he was already dead.

“When he came out he was dead, his head was swollen, face was swollen,” said Martina Childs, a friend of Ware.

But police said Ware continued to resist arrest before being pepper sprayed, at which point they arrested him and while walking out he collapsed and they said they immediately began CPR.

“He wasn’t in handcuffs or anything, he was unresponsive, he was dead when he was dragged out of the woods, and it was at that time that they administered CPR,” said one resident.

“An autopsy has been requested with high priority, in an attempt to determine the cause of death as quickly as possible,” said Chief Dunn.

As for the gun that Ware allegedly had, police said they were not able to locate any weapon at the scene. The officers involved with the arrest have not been put on administrative leave as the death investigation is still ongoing.

A GoFundMe has been created to help with funeral expenses for Ware. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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