Report of woman’s death in IMPD custody released

Photo of Eleanor Northington. (Provided Photo/Dana Brown)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — An autopsy report was just released after an Indianapolis woman died in police custody in February. 

The report says 43-year-old Eleanor Northington died from lack of oxygen. The Marion County Coroner says it was due to morbid obesity, schizophrenia and a struggle with others. 

On February 6, IMPD received a call from a member at Mount Calvary Apostolic Church claiming Northington was aggressive with the congregation during a prayer service. 

When officers arrived, they claim Northington began assaulting them. Officers say this forced them to restrain her and put her into handcuffs. Then, Northington stopped breathing. Officers removed the handcuffs and began administering CPR. 

IMPD says Northington was disruptive for more than an hour with those at the church before officers arrived. The department says officers only interacted with Northington for less than six minutes. They say it was a behavioral health emergency. 

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Northington’s family says she suffered from postpartum depression and wasn’t on any type of medication. They told News 8 in an interview in February that police did not handle this mental issue correctly. 

IMPD says they’ve had multiple meetings with family members. The family claims they haven’t been contacted.