An autopsy has confirmed that George Floyd’s killing was “caused by asphyxia due to neck and back compression that led to a lack of blood flow to the brain,” ABC News reports.
On Monday, the results of an independent autopsy that was ordered by Floyd’s family were released. Independent examiners found that the weight of Derek Chauvin’s knee on Floyd’s back and neck, him being handcuffed, and how Floyd was positioned contributed to Floyd’s death because it blocked Floyd’s diaphragm from being able to function normally. Examiners called Fl0yd’s death a homicide.
The autopsy was done by Dr. Michael Baden and the University of Michigan Medical School’s director of autopsy and forensic services, Dr. Allecia Wilson, according to the family’s attorney Ben Crump. Baden has previously performed independent autopsies on slain Black men Eric Garner and Michael Brown. He also served as New York’s medical examiner in 1978 and 1979.
Fired Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was arrested and charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter after kneeling on Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes on May 25. Protestors are currently demanding the arrest of the three other officers who were involved in Floyd’s murder. They have currently been terminated but not charged. Chauvin can be seen continuously kneeling on Floyd’s neck despite Floyd telling the officers he can’t breathe.
According to ABC News, the complaint said the official examination of Floyd’s body is still ongoing; however, prosecutors were able to release some information. The examination is reportedly separate from the independent autopsy Floyd’s family requested. At first, the medical examiner said Floyd’s examination did not show any signs that his death was caused by traumatic asphyxia or strangulation, according to the complaint. The complaint initially said that Floyd’s death was due to his underlying health conditions, including coronary artery disease and hypertensive heart disease. “The combined effects of Mr. Floyd being restrained by the police, his underlying health conditions, and any potential intoxicants in his system likely contributed to his death,” the complaint said.
” Right now, we are currently awaiting the final results from the Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s office laboratory studies, which will provide the most medically accurate cause of death determination possible,” The Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s office said in a statement last week. “The autopsy alone cannot answer all questions germane to the cause and manner of death,” the statement said. The statement said the findings “must be interpreted in the context of the pertinent investigative information and informed by the results of laboratory studies.”