Fresno police added new security measures to prevent another escape from department headquarters in the aftermath of murder suspect Ibn Haqq’s flight a week ago, Chief Jerry Dyer said Thursday.
Those include handcuffs more securely attached to restraints and leg shackles anchored to walls with eye bolts. In addition, the department is adding new audio and video equipment to interview rooms.
Haqq was tracked down and recaptured by officers early Thursday morning in the Sacramento area. Dyer said the escape is the first that occurred in the nearly 20 years that he has been chief and that he is grateful Haqq apparently did not commit other violent crimes while he was free.
“I can’t imagine what would have happened had he injured someone else,” Dyer said.
As for the escape Friday night, Dyer said it was due to “an honest mistake by good detectives that were trying to do their jobs.”
Dyer said the two men were kicked and punched in the fight with Haqq and one officer is wearing a splint on his arm in the aftermath of the battle with the handcuff-swinging suspect.
Haqq was detained by police shortly after Delon Agee was shot 10 times — nine rounds in the body and one in the head — July 5 in the 300 block of East Jensen Avenue. Police released Haqq because they needed more evidence to make an arrest, Dyer said. Friday evening, Haqq was rearrested at First Street and Tulare Avenue and taken to headquarters.
The chief said there were two types of chairs in the interview room where officers placed Haqq; Haqq was able to slip the handcuff off the arm of a chair to which detectives had attached it. When both officers were briefly out of the room, Haqq stood up and moved toward a window, which he opened and then kicked out a screen. The detectives rushed back into the room and fought with Haqq, but Haqq was able to make his escape.
Asked why officers were not armed during the interview, Dyer said it would be “very dangerous” to have armed officers in the interview room because of the danger a suspect might be able to grab a sidearm.