He is best remembered for scoring the Match of the Day goal of the season in the 1992-93 campaign – the inaugural Premier League season. Memorably, the Villa star dribbled the ball from inside his own half before chipping the Wimbledon keeper from the edge of the area.
Paramedics said he went into cardiac arrest on his way to hospital. The death has been referred to the police watchdog, the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).
His nephew, Fabian Atkinson, said his uncle was having dialysis treatment for kidney problems: “And obviously that’s inevitably why his heart was weaker.
“They need to, as soon as they deploy a Taser, they need to deploy an ambulance. As soon as, it should be mandatory.
“Because, how do they know, unnaturally putting volts through a body, how do they know they’re going to survive that, eventually, in the long run, that they’re not going to need any medical attention?”
Paula Quinn, who lives in a first-floor flat near the Atkinson property in Trench, told the Shropshire Star she had witnessed the Taser being fired after hearing shouting.
“I stuck my head out the window to look out and I saw two police officers shouting at the gentleman and he sort of was stumbling towards them and the police officers warned him they would Taser him, but he just seemed a bit, perhaps, inebriated.
“And because he continued to step forward once or twice – non-threatening – they deployed the Taser,” she said.
“As the Taser hit him in the stomach he just went ‘doof’, down like a lead balloon.”