911 calls paint clearer picture of mental health crisis before Cedric Lofton’s death


WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) – The 911 calls that left 17-year-old Cedric Lofton unresponsive while in custody at the Sedgwick County Juvenile Intake and Assessment Center (JIAC) have shed light on the health crisis incident involving the teenager that led to the incident in police custody. Lofton later died in a Wichita hospital.

Out of four 911 calls, the first three give us a better idea of ​​the mental health crisis Lofton suffered, both the night he became unresponsive last September and the days before. The first two calls come from Lofton’s adoptive father. The other two were from workers at the JIAC facility, both before and after the teen’s breathing stopped.

During an emergency call, Lofton’s adoptive father told a dispatcher that at school, Lofton said security guards were undercover agents planning to kill him and that at home, he wouldn’t let anyone into his room, claiming it was the only part of the house that wasn’t bugged.

“We were supposed to take him to ComCare today because he had, we believe, schizophrenic episodes,” Lofton’s adoptive father was heard telling the dispatcher.

On the second 911 call two days later, Lofton’s adoptive father said the teenager was “like having a nervous breakdown” and immediately put Lofton out of the house. He said Lofton showed up anyway and started causing trouble on the outside. He requested that Lofton be taken to ComCare for a mental health check.

“He’s really paranoid. He believes everyone is trying to kill him. He said he could have access to a gun if he needed it,” Lofton’s adoptive father told the dispatcher.

The officers responding to the emergency call instead brought Lofton to the JIAC, using a WRAP restraint device. The next 911 call occurs as the JIAC guards struggle with Lofton inside his cell. Like the teenager’s adoptive father, they asked officers to come and take Lofton in for a mental health screening. Shortly after, the final call to 911 when Lofton stopped breathing. The JIAC guard who made the call said he had no qualified nurses or AEDs.

“We perform chest compressions. I don’t have an AED,” the guard told the dispatcher.

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