High profile forensic pathologist Dr. Michael Baden and his colleague Dr. Allecia Wilson conducted an independent autopsy on George Floyd at his family’s request. The results, released today by attorneys for Floyd’s family, indicated he “died from asphyxia due to neck and back compression that led to a lack of blood flow to the brain.”
One of the attorneys, Ben Crump, said: “The autopsy found the compression cut off blood to Floyd’s brain, and the weight on his back made it hard to breathe.”
Fired police officer Derek Chauvin has been charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in Floyd’s death. This new finding, which conflicts with the preliminary autopsy results, has some wondering if the charges against Chauvin will be upgraded.
On May 26, the Hennepin County Medical Examiner conducted an autopsy on Floyd and the preliminary results which were released on Friday “revealed no physical findings that support a diagnosis of traumatic asphyxia or strangulation.” The report went on to say:
Mr. Floyd had 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 defendant had his knee on Mr. Floyd’s neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds in total.
Two minutes and 53 seconds of this was after Mr. Floyd was non-responsive. Police are trained that this type of restraint with a subject in a prone position is inherently dangerous.
These findings can be viewed in Chauvin’s charging document.