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Brooklyn Family: Man Died Of Apparent Heart Attack After Cops Barged Into Home

Police Maintain That They Knocked Before Gaining Access To Alcis Home
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NYPD Cruiser (file / credit: D Dipasupil/Getty Images)

FILE – NYPD Cruiser (credit: Getty Images)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A Brooklyn man who died Thursday may have literally been scared to death by police investigating the theft of a cellphone, the man’s family said Friday.

Carlos Alcis, 43, died of an apparent heart attack early Thursday morning after police entered his Brownsville home. Police said they knocked and that Alcis let them in; his family said officers barged in around 5 a.m. and the father of nine and others in the basement apartment were awakened during the commotion, WCBS 880’s Ginny Kosola reported.

“The police put the flashlight on my face,” said Emmanuel Alcis, Carlos Alcis’ 15-year-old son whom police initially believed was a suspect in the cellphone theft. “I look up, and I couldn’t see who was it.”

While police were inside the apartment, Carlos Alcis suffered an apparent heart attack. His family said the man had no history of heart problems.

Carlos Alcis’ brother, Rudy, said when the family awakened, police were already inside the apartment and that officers did nothing in the 30 minutes after Carlos Alcis fell to the ground. Officers said they performed CPR on Alcis, who was later pronounced dead at the scene.

“With more than 10 police officers inside of the house, my nephew here had to call 911 for my brother,” Rudy Alcis said.

The Alcis family spoke to reporters at the office of their attorney, Sanford Rubenstein, who said he is awaiting autopsy results but declined to reveal whether he is considering a lawsuit.

“We have a man who died, who might be alive today, had this whole series of events not occurred,” Rubenstein said.

Officers responded to an early-morning report of a strong-arm robbery at Rockaway Parkway and Kings Highway. Upon arrival, they were met by a 21-year-old woman who said she was punched in the face and robbed of her phone, police said.

With the alleged victim in one of their cars, officers then canvassed the neighborhood and saw the suspect run into a building at 379 Rockaway Parkway, police said. Responding officers then began to search the building, knocking on doors until they reached the Alcises’ apartment. Police spoke to Emmanuel Alcis and showed him to the victim, who said he was not the thief, police said.

Police announced the arrest of a 16-year-old in connection with the cellphone robbery on Friday night.

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