SAN FRANCISCO, August 15, (THEWILL) – Former Aston Villa footballer Dalian Atkinson has died after he was shot with a Taser gun by police.
Officers were called to a home in Meadow Close, Telford in the early hours of Monday morning amid concerns “for the safety of an individual”.
West Mercia Police said the 48-year-old man – named locally as Atkinson – was given medical treatment after being Tasered but died around 90 minutes later.
An ambulance spokesman said while he was being taken to Princess Royal Hospital in the Shropshire town he suffered a cardiac arrest and was pronounced dead shortly after arriving at hospital.
The former striker is best remembered for scoring Villa’s opening goal in their 1994 League Cup final win over Manchester United at Wembley.
He also won the first Premier League Goal of the Season prize for a goal against Wimbledon in the 1992/93 campaign.
Although he was never capped by England, Atkinson did play in one B international and scored his team’s goal in a 4-1 defeat to the Republic of Ireland in Cork in 1990.
Atkinson’s other clubs included Ipswich, Sheffield Wednesday, Real Sociedad, Fenebahce and Manchester City.
Aston Villa have tweeted their condolences, saying: “RIP Dalian Atkinson. You’ll never be forgotten!”
Wednesday have also tweeted their sympathies, saying: “The thoughts of everyone at Wednesday are with the friends and family of Dalian Atkinson this morning. RIP.”
The FA tweeted: “We are saddened to hear of the passing of former England B international Dalian Atkinson. Our thoughts are with his family and friends.”
Current Villa midfielder Jack Grealish took to social media to say: “RIP Dalian Atkinson. Loved watching videos of him & always remember his great goal vs Wimbledon. My thoughts are with his family & friends.”
Police said in a statement: “West Mercia Police can confirm that officers responded to a report for the concern for the safety of an individual at approximately 1.30am this morning at an address in Telford.
“Upon arrival Taser was deployed and a 48-year-old man, who subsequently received medical attention, was pronounced dead at approximately 3am.
“West Mercia Police are unable to comment any further as the incident has been referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) as is normal procedure, and will assist the IPCC with their inquiries.”
A West Midlands Ambulance Service spokesman said: “We were called by West Mercia Police to an address in Meadow Close in the Trench area of Telford at about 1.45am this morning.
“An ambulance was dispatched and upon arrival found a man who had been Tasered.
“As he was being conveyed to Princess Royal Hospital, his condition deteriorated and he went into cardiac arrest.
“Despite the efforts of the crew and hospital staff, it was not possible to save him and he was confirmed dead at hospital, shortly after arrival.”