AUBURN HILLS, Michigan – It sounds like a pretty unusual 911 call. A 53-year-old Bloomfield Hills, Michigan man was spotted walking down busy I-75 Sunday while taking off his clothes.
Eventually, the man was strolling naked down the Michigan highway during a snowstorm wearing only his cowboy hat. A nearby motorist took cell phone video of the incident.
The man’s truck had gone into a ditch. And, for an unknown reason, he began walking down the highway and shedding his clothes.
While the call may sound unusual, Auburn Hills Police Chief Doreen Olko said the incident is not that odd. Chief Olko writes a blog. She posted a lengthy post about the incident Monday.
Chief Olko said the sergeant and officers responding to the man immediately recognized that they were probably dealing with a person suffering from “Excited Delirium Syndrome.”
Excited Delirium Syndrome:
- Medical condition
- Confrontation can exacerbate the condition
- Victims tend to be male, average age 36
- Victims tend to have a history of stimulant use (cocaine, meth, PCP, LSD)
- Victims tend to have a history of a preexisting psychological disorder
Chief Olko wrote, “I don’t know if this man fit the entire profile but it is likely he fit enough of it to end up in this state. Their bodies overheat in an extreme way which is why they take off their clothes.”
These individuals can be combative, and if they struggle with police, the body may overheat more and go into cardiac arrest.
Chief Olko said,” When the officers began to talk with him they realized he was delusional.” The officers were able to convince him to get into the patrol car. On the way to the fire station, the man became unresponsive. When they got to the fire station, he became combative. But, there was lots of help, and paramedics were able to get him to the hospital.
No one was hurt. “Because the officers recognized the true nature of the call, they may have saved his life,” wrote Chief Olko.
It is unclear if charges will be filed against the man. Right now, police tell us they just want to make sure he gets the help he needs. He is currently recovering.