Francisco R. Santiago is a police officer from Rochester, Monroe County, New York, United States. He was one of the seven Rochester Police Department officers suspended due to their involvement in the arrest of Daniel Prude, an African-American man from Chicago, Illinois, USA, amid the new coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in 2020.
Suffering from mental health issues, Prude was in the custody of Vaughn and his fellow Rochester Police Department officers Mark Vaughn, Troy Taladay, Paul Ricotta, Andrew Specksgoor, Josiah Harris and Sergeant Michael Magri on March 23, 2020. Prude was having an acute, manic, psychotic episode that day so his older brother Joe D. Prude called the police for help.
Daniel became unresponsive and was sent to Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester where he was taken off life support on March 30, 2020. Here are 10 things about Santiago:
- In 2012, he was one of the recipients of the Excellent Police Service Awards from the Rochester Police Department.
- In 2009, his annual wage was 61,077.12. In the same year, he had a total of two-hour overtime work.
- His annual wage was $85,771 in 2015, $85,258 in 2016, $83,285 in 2017 and $89,926 in 2018.
- In March 2015, he and Samuel Giancursio were the Rochester Police Department’s officers of the month.
- On October 6, 2015, he was serving an arrest warrant to Ronald Baker, then 52, at an apartment on Monroe Avenue in Rochester when the latter stabbed him. Sustaining a single stab wound to the upper body, he was transported to Strong Memorial Hospital and was later released, Democrat and Chronicle reported.
- He was 36 years old when he was involved in Daniel’s arrest on March 23, 2020. That day, he held Daniel’s legs for more than 2 minutes while Vaughn and Taladay were applying their full body weights on the arrestee’s head and back.
- On April 14, 2020, he was interviewed by investigators Michael Houlihan and Randy Benjamin. In their report, the interviewers stated that the interview was brief as his involvement with Daniel was also brief and that he assisted with the arrest and his account of his involvement did not differentiate from the subject resistance report (SRR) that he prepared for the incident.
- On September 3, 2020, Rochester mayor Lovely Warren announced that he, Vaughn, Taladay, Ricotta, Specksgoor, Harris and Magri were suspended with pay.
- The City of Rochester’s Office of Public Integrity released a report on December 15, 2020 to clear him, Ricotta, Vaughn, Taladay, Harris, Speckgoor and Magri of any potential wrongdoing in connection to Daniel’s death.
- A grand jury voted not to indict him, Ricotta, Vaughn, Taladay, Specksgoor, Harris and Magri in Daniel’s death. On February 23, 2021, New York attorney general Letitia James explained, “Daniel Prude was in the throes of a mental health crisis and what he needed was compassion, care and help from trained professionals. Tragically, he received none of those things. We concluded that there was sufficient evidence surrounding Mr. Prude’s death to warrant presenting the case to a grand jury and we presented the most comprehensive case possible.”