George Floyd’s Autopsy Doctor Supports Homicide Decision | Black Lives Matter News

The chief medical examiner who ruled George Floyd’s death a homicide testified Friday that the way the police held him down and squeezed his neck “was just more than Mr. Floyd could take,” given the condition of his heart.

Dr Andrew Baker, the Hennepin County medical examiner, spoke during the murder trial of former officer Derek Chauvin for pressing his knee on or near Floyd’s neck for what prosecutors said nine and a half minutes as the 46-year-old black man was pinned to the sidewalk last year.

Asked about his finding that the “subdual, restraint and compression of the neck” policy led to Floyd’s death, Baker said Floyd had severe underlying heart disease and an enlarged heart requiring more oxygen than the blood. normal to function, as well as a narrowing of two heart arteries.

Hennepin County medical examiner Dr Andrew Baker said George Floyd had severe underlying heart disease and an enlarged heart requiring more oxygen than normal to function, as well as narrowing of two heart arteries . [Court TV/Pool via AP]

Baker said that being involved in a fight increases adrenaline, which causes the heart to beat even faster and provide more oxygen.

“And in my opinion, the law enforcement subdual, restraint and compression of the neck was just more than what Mr. Floyd could withstand under these heart issues,” the medical examiner said.

Chauvin, 45, is charged with murder and manslaughter in Floyd’s death on May 25. Floyd was arrested outside a neighborhood market after being charged with attempting to pass a fake $ 20 bill.

Video of a bystander of Floyd crying he couldn’t breathe as bystanders yelled at the white officer to leave him sparked protests and dispersed violence in the United States.

Chauvin’s attorney, Eric Nelson, argued that the now-fired white officer did what he was trained to do and that Floyd’s illegal drug use and underlying health issues, not his knee de Chauvin, had killed him. An autopsy found fentanyl and methamphetamine in Floyd’s system.

“Mr. Floyd’s use of fentanyl did not cause the subdual or neck restraint, his heart disease did not cause the subdual or neck restraint,” Baker told the jury, referring to the way the police pressed Floyd face down on the street.

Dr Lindsey Thomas, assistant medical examiner in the Hennepin County medical examiner’s office, said the sheer volume of footage of George Floyd’s arrest helped support Dr Andrew Baker’s conclusions. [Court TV/Pool via AP]

Dr Lindsey Thomas, deputy medical examiner in the Hennepin County medical examiner’s office until she took “semi-retirement” in 2017, said the sheer volume of videos of Floyd’s arrest helped to support Baker’s conclusions.

“There has never been a case that I have been involved that had videos over such a long time and from so many different perspectives,” Thomas said, saying the videos clearly showed the physical signs associated with opioid overdoses were not present in Floyd’s death.

Thomas said the videos made it clear that this was not sudden death from a heart attack. She said the videos also showed no signs of fentanyl overdose “where someone gets very drowsy and then gradually stops breathing, calmly, peacefully.”

“What was absolutely unique about this case was the sheer volume of documents I had to review,” said Thomas, referring to videos recorded on spectators’ cellphones and cameras carried by police.

Jurors also received envelopes containing photographs of Floyd’s corpse. Thomas drew their attention to abrasions on the left side of Floyd’s face and on his shoulder – injuries she described as “consistent with what he looks like on the video, which he struggles to put on. in a position where he can breathe. “

Defense attorney Eric Nelson, lead attorney for Derek Chauvin, convinced Dr. Lindsey Thomas that being prone was not in itself enough to kill someone. [Court TV/Pool via AP]

Eric Nelson, Chauvin’s lead lawyer, convinced Thomas that being prone was not in itself enough to kill someone, noting that massage therapists sometimes had clients lying on their stomachs.

“I could be lying by the pool in Florida on my stomach while lying down – not inherently dangerous?” Nelson asked.

“Good,” Thomas replied.

Nelson asked her about what-if scenarios, with Floyd being found dead in various circumstances in which the police were not involved.

Prosecutor Jerry Blackwell then asked Thomas, “George Floyd wasn’t lying by the pool on his stomach in Florida, was he?”

Thomas agreed, saying: “There is no evidence to suggest that he would have died that night, except for interactions with law enforcement.”

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