State Police release details regarding Havener investigation
NEW YORK STATE POLICE
Major Philip T. Rougeux Troop D Commander
The New York State Police is investigating an incident that took place on January 22, 2018 along Genesee Street in the city of Oneida.
On Monday, January 22, 2018 at 4:21 a.m. the Madison County 911 Center received a call from a female motorist regarding a male subject walking in the roadway along Genesee Street in the area of the State Police Headquarters building screaming and attempting to enter passing cars. Two city of Oneida Police officers responded and located a male in the roadway holding a flashlight and screaming incoherently. As they approached the driver, later identified as John Havener, they attempted to get him out of the roadway by using verbal commands. Havener refused to listen to the officers and began to be physically combative after officers made physical attempts to remove him from the roadway. Officers then used pepper spray and deployed a Taser in an attempt to gain control of him. An officer from Canastota Police Department arrived on scene to assist, Havener continued to resist and a Taser was utilized. Members of the Madison County Sheriff’s Office and State Police arrived shortly thereafter and assisted in securing Havener with handcuffs and restraints. Officers requested EMS after they noticed Havener having a medical event and appeared to be in distress. Vineall ambulance responded and transported Havener to Oneida Health Care Facility located less than a half mile from the scene.
The investigation, at this time, has determined Havener and a male passenger left a residence in Munnsville, NY around 3 a.m. in a gray colored 2005 Toyota Corolla and were headed to Wal-Mart on Genesee Street. The passenger stated as they were headed down Genesee Street near the Glenwood Plaza, Havener began to drive erratically. The passenger stated that he grabbed the steering wheel a couple of times because he was scared of crashing and how Havener was acting. After passing the traffic signal at Dream Catchers Plaza, Havener became very agitated and for unknown reasons, started to drive backward down Route 5. The vehicle then struck a curb and snowbank near the entrance of the State Police building. The passenger then grabbed the keys from the vehicle and ran down Genesee Street toward McDonalds.
An autopsy performed by the Onondaga County Medical Examiner’s Office showed no anatomical cause of death. Toxicology results may take up to several months to return. The preliminary investigation has revealed that Havener used methamphetamine prior to the incident. Several motorists who witnessed Havener driving erratically and his subsequent interaction with police have come forward and have stated that Havener was in the roadway acting belligerent and aggressive toward police officers. Witnesses stated he appeared to be under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.
At the request of both the Oneida Police Department and the Canastota Police Department, the names of the officers who responded to the incident are being released: Oneida Police Officer Daniel Slator, Oneida Police Officer Jeffrey Barres and Canastota Police Officer Derek Oursler.
No further details will be released by any of the involved agencies pertaining to this investigation until the conclusion of the investigation by the New York State Police and the New York State Attorney General’s Office.