Man Crushed to Death by Garbage Compacter After Falling Asleep in Dumpster—Police

Louisiana's Hammond Police Department are investigating the death of 42-year-old Jermaine Watts after his body was found in a garbage truck on January 11.

A preliminary investigation concluded that Watts had fallen asleep in a commercial dumpster, potentially to escape poor overnight weather.

The contents of the dumpster were then loaded in a garbage truck equipped with a mechanical compactor. Watts suffered fatal injuries when the compactor was activated, police believe.

Authorities are still investigating the details of the death and the official cause of death is pending as they wait for the final autopsy and toxicology reports from the coroner's office.

Newsweek has contacted the Hammond Police Department for comment and more information.

Police in Michigan had to deal with an accident similar to this when a man died after getting trapped inside a wood chipper.

Newsweek reported that a 48-year-old man had been working as part of a three-person crew in Champlain Circle near Middlebelt and Lone Pine roads at 9 a.m. when the incident happened on October 19, 2021.

Police did not release the name of the company that employed the victim but said he had been working as part of a crew at a private home.

West Bloomfield Police Department Deputy Chief Curt Lawson confirmed the details of the incident. He said the police have "every indication" that the man's jacket got caught on a branch as it was being fed into the wood chipper.

"We received a 911 call from an individual that said his co-worker had been found inside of a wood chipper," Lawson said.

He added: "They were able to provide first aid to the individual who was, at the time, conscious. Every indication at this point is that his jacket may have been caught on a branch that was being fed into the wood chipper."

Paramedics attempted to save the man's life after the incident and treat him for his injuries but he died while on the way to the hospital.

Lawson extended his condolences to the family and co-workers of the victim. He said: "Our hearts go out to the workers on the scene and of course the victim's family."

He also highlighted the importance of offering support to the officers who have to respond to incidents of this nature.

"It's something you can't prepare yourself for and those officers you know we have a peer support program here.

"We have individuals for them to talk to. And we also debrief that incident because we have to make sure our officers' mental health is a priority for us."

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Stock image of police tape. Louisiana's Hammond Police Department are investigating the death of 42-year-old Jermaine Watts Getty Images