Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was recently charged with third-degree murder and first-degree manslaughter for his role in Floyd’s death.
Trigger Warning, Police Brutality.
A private autopsy report has found George Floyd’s death was a homicide caused by asphyxia and loss of blood flow to the brain. According to the New York Times, Floyd’s family confirmed this today. The latest autopsy challenges a previous report.
The autopsy also found compression to Floyd’s back and neck was the cause of the lack of blood flow to his brain. CNN reports the victim was “dead on the scene” in Minneapolis on May 25 per the family’s attorney Benjamin Crump. Derek Chauvin, the Minnesota police officer who has since been arrested in connection to Floyd’s death was shown in numerous clips with his knee on his neck, these were his last moments alive. Additional released videos show other officers applying pressure to his back by kneeling on it.
In total Chauvin had his knee on Floyd’s neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds. Floyd was unresponsive for two minutes and 53 seconds of the total time. These timestamps come directly from a criminal complaint released by the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office.
Crump released the following statement on the new findings: “The ambulance was his hearse,” he told reporters. “George died because he needed a breath. He needed a breath of air.”
Dr. Michael Baden, one of the independent medical examiners on the autopsy:
“There is no other health issue that could cause or contribute to the death. Police have this false impression that if you can talk, you can breathe. That’s not true.”
According to CNN, “preliminary autopsy results” noted that “combined effects of being restrained, any potential intoxicants in Floyd’s system and his underlying health issues, including heart disease, probably contributed to his death.” Chauvin was charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. Crump stated Chauvin should be charged with first-degree murder.
The independent autopsy arrives after the Hennepin County Medical Examiner shared “no physical findings” to “support a diagnosis of traumatic asphyxia or strangulation.” At the moment, Floyd’s cause of death has not been released. It is being investigated by local, state, and federal law enforcement, per CNN.
Robyn Mowatt is a staff writer at Okayplayer where she covers culture, music, and fashion. You can see what's on her mind @robyn_mowatt.