Police cadet died from blunt force head trauma, medical examiner reports

Kelley Chase, 38, received a head injury Oct. 12 while working with an instructor on routine self-defense tactics and died the next day.
FROM STAFF REPORTS Modified: October 20, 2012 at 7:06 pm •  Published: October 19, 2012
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An Oklahoma City police recruit injured during training last week died from “head trauma, blunt force,” according to the state medical examiner.

Kelley Chase, 38, received a head injury Oct. 12 while working with an instructor on routine self-defense tactics and died the next day.

Amy Elliott, spokeswoman for the medical examiner, released the cause of death Friday. The manner of death is pending and the autopsy report is not ready, she said.

The fatal injury occurred while Chase, an Air Force veteran, was concluding a 78-hour course of defense training for cadets.

The course culminates with a six-minute exam during which cadets are rigorously tested by different instructors on a host of techniques. During a rotation of simulated fights, he went to the ground several times with different instructors, police said.

While it was not a violent hit, his unprotected head had hit the mat several times during the test, police Capt. Dexter Nelson said.

A new policy now requires that cadets wear protective head gear in the self-defense course.

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