Wednesday, December 16, 2009


I am sure many of you have seen the Florida news report of the arrest and subsequent death of Andrew Grande- otherwise known in adult videos as Dustin Michaels.

I had considered posting the video report on the Borderboys blog but thought twice about it after seeing the whole video on the MOC blog.

Some criticized MOC and even Dewayne In San Diego for initially posting the video report...A position I could understand since his death affected friends and associates deeply.

But in a way I am glad I got to see the report because now I am seeing some of the worst in people.

Whether or not people like the fact that he was a pot smoker and a gay adult porn performer he still was a human being and someones friend, brother despite the public persona he portrayed.

In fact, his father is quite distressed as seen in this excerpt of a story from the NewsHerald:

Michael T. Grande Jr., the father of Andrew Grande, said he wants people to remember his son for things other than how he died. Watching the truTV footage of his son choking to death is almost too much to bear, he said.

“That’s a terrible thing to watch. It just kills me, but I had to see it,” Grande told The News Herald in a phone interview from New Jersey. “I’m just so crushed inside about it.”

I am seeing various blog comments that suggest he deserved to die because he smoked pot or tried to "resist arrest and swallow the baggie of pot". One person who made a comment after me on the MOC blog made an assumption that at the time of the arrest he was so high that he wasn't feeling any pain.

Thus far I have not read a toxicology report or heard any report that he was tweaked out of his mind.

Some of the comments onh the story I linked above are even worse.

After reviewing thevideo report again today it is clear that something is very wrong.

(Photo: Twitpic of Andrew Grande smoking marijuana, according to his own caption.)

As I stated in the comments at the MOC blog:

What makes this "horrific" is the fact that if you watch closely he was in distress when they were trying to cuff him. Clearly they were not paying attention to that. When he sat up he was clearly a suspect in distress- his body language suggests that.

Watch an episode of cops and you can see an aggressive, resisting arrest suspect. At that point I think he realized that the swallowing of the baggie of pot was not working out well.

Still obviously in distress he stood up and then he was tasered. There was no need to taser him- he did not appear to be threatening any of the officers.

While I obviously, like everyone else, couldn't hear the exchange between the officers and Andrew I suspect that- based on my experience working in medicine for a good part of my life- that when he was tasered the trauma of that made him either automatically yell out.

The baggie probably then lodged itself into the trachea, and plastic tends to adhere to things when wet- especially tracheal mucous and that ius when it became impossible to dislodge it.

Had he not been tasered they may have been able to get the baggie out of his throat. The delay, the tasering and the slow response of the ambulance- whether it took time to get there or it was called after the tasering is what killed him. Too many minutes passed and the brain can only be without O2 for so long.

What is bothering me, aside from the vile comments I have seen is the fact that if Andrew Grande had been, say, a clean cut 23-year-old son of a local doctor or other prominent citizen there would have been more public outcry.

In a CBS news blog story it says:

The woman who made the complaint, Crystal Amber Cronnon, disappeared after Grande was put in the ambulance but police had her driver’s license, according to The News Herald.

One of the tapes from the incident includes audio but no video of Cronnon telling the responding officers, Sgt. Billy Byrd, that Grande "pushed me down when I got out of my car," but continues "I’m not about getting anyone arrested."

The tape then cuts to a later shot of Byrd attempting to give Grande the Heimlich but he is unsuccessful. After the emergency medical technicians arrive and start to treat Grande, Byrd does an interview with the truTV crew. Byrd says he and the other deputies were trying to reach into Grande’s mouth to remove the object.

"We was(sic) trying to pull whatever he had in his mouth back out of his mouth," Byrd says. "Obviously, he was resisting and trying to prevent us from doing that, trying to steer away, and at that time he was tased."

Now I watched the video three times and I never saw a hand by his mouth. What I did see I described above.

But because he was a gay porn star and because he was open about smoking pot and not some clean cut twink guilt is assumed. No one has asked if he had pushed the female down because she may have been raging and slapping at him. No one is asking why three, supposedly trained law enforcement officers failed to be able to tell the difference between someone aggressively resisting arrest and a suspect in distress.

Had Andrew been some rich dudes kid that got busted with pot and made a knee-jerk decision to try and aswallow nit...and the video evidence was it is in this case...that when Andrew sat up he was in a posture that suggested distress rather than agressiveness there would be an investigation into whether or not the use of the taser was jkustified and if that action actually made him swallow-= apparently into his trachea such a large portion of the baggie that it was impossible to dislodge it at that point.

Would they be asking why the police lied...obviously lied as you saw in that quote above...and why they didn't immediately get trained medical professionals there?

Why critical minutes passed before one officer got a first aid bag out of the car?

Instead, because of how he looked, the accusation by the female, the use and swallowing of marijuana it is nearly a closed case.

I again just wonder if it would be closed if he was a heterosexual 23-year-old in the community who just got busted with some pot. I THINK NOT- people would be outraged that the cops tasered a young man that was clearly in distress. But because he did gay porn and openly smoked pot I guess it is justified in the minds of sick ass people in this country.

Andrew Grande was a human being first and foremost and it sickens me to see how people in the news story comments and elsewhere can be so heartless and cruel just because they are judging him based on the surface and taking what the authorities have to say as gospel truth.

One person that obviously knew him well posted this tribute video on YouTube and I will leave you with that.

UPDATE: The original vid I had up is marked private now...but here is another beautiful vid is produced by Andrew's cousins

Song on piano for our cousin Andrew Grande by Kalai:


  1. Thank you for pointing out the extreme injustice that this incident blatantly portrays...and the media's intolerant and hypocritical response. One second can change everything...this boy could have been me.

  2. This is Andrew's Mom, I haven't commented on your site as I have been very hurt by what you blogged about Andrew's biological father. (or as Andrew referred to him as Sperm Donor) You see Mike had nothing to do with Andrew for the last 12 years of his life, he basically told him he didn't want anyone to know he was his father so not to call him. Your blog about Mike is a disgrace to Andrew's Memory.The only reason Mike said that is because he is hoping for money. Mike didn't come to the funeral nor did he help with any of the cost, this has hurt Andrew's sister in the worst way.I am now going to place a poem Andrew had written when he was 14.....
    Empty Beer Bottles
    The smell on the tip of his tongue
    my life was yet so young
    My baby sister's piercing cries still sting,
    as my father would destroy everything.
    His speech was full of slurs,
    and he'd hit my mother and vigorously curse.
    His heart was as empty as the brown bottles,
    and cold as a sculptured ice model.
    My memories of him are in my mind and set.
    Its a mistake I will never forget.
    He barely will call or write,
    only because we usually end up in a fight.
    The bottles bring back old times,
    And his abusive and violent crimes.
    written by Andrew Michael Grande

    So you see Mike was not a good role model at all, I finally got the courage to leave him after 15 years of abuse and with the help and Love and encouragement of Andrew.
    I miss my Son and Loved him unconditionally...May he rest in peace. Thankyou Andrew's Mom

  3. I can understand how you feel about his biological father- had I known what you have shared I would not have given him any more press via the quote from a mainstream Miami newspaper piece. The stuff in GREEN is direct quotes from NEWS articles. At the time of the piece the articles I quoted only had a statement from him. How is this a disgrace to Andrew's memory? I am arguing that he was mistreated by the police and that if things went as they should have he would have been alive. The quote by his father was put up not knowing the back story or the family history. had I known that and still gave that man voice then it would have been a disgrace to his memory. there was no way of knowing- at the time of this piece, that Mike was all you said. the only reference to his father is the direct quote from the Miami News Herald.