The Hennepin County Medical Examiner believed George Floyd had a “fatal level of fentanyl” in his body, according to court documents filed Tuesday in relation to the case against the four Minneapolis police officers charged in his death.
“Six pieces of evidence were filed in the case Tuesday one day after former officer Tou Thao’s attorneys requested the release of the full autopsy reports from the Hennepin County Medical Examiner, the Armed Forces Medical Examiner and the private medical examiners hired by George Floyd’s family,” KMSP-TV reported.
“In one memorandum filed May 26 after a virtual meeting with Baker, the [Hennepin County] Attorney’s Office said [Chief Hennepin County Medical Examiner Dr. Andrew] Baker concluded, ‘The autopsy revealed no physical evidence suggesting that Mr. Floyd died of asphyxiation,'” the outlet added.
Another memorandum filed on June 1 by the attorney’s office indicated Baker stated that Floyd’s fentanyl level was “pretty high.”
Toxicology findings revealed “a fatal level of fentanyl under normal circumstances,” the filing read, citing Baker.
“[Baker] said that if Mr. Floyd had been found dead in his home (or anywhere else) and there were no other contributing factors he would conclude that it was an overdose death,” the June 1 memo added.
Hennepin County Attorney’s Office released this document. Dr. Andrew Baker, the Chief Hennepin County Medical Examiner who reviewed #GeorgeFloyd‘s blood test, says the substances found lead him to conclude it was an overdose death. #BlackLivesMatter. Read: pic.twitter.com/xyaQvHDpQw
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) August 25, 2020
However, the Armed Forces Medical Examiner filed a memorandum agreeing with the the Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s final conclusion that Floyd was murdered, while noting the presence of methamphetamine and fentanyl in his blood.
“His death was caused by the police subdual and restraint in the setting of severe hypertensive atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, and methamphetamine and fentanyl intoxication,” the Armed Forces Medical Examiner’s memo said.
Body camera footage leaked earlier this month showed Floyd struggling several minutes against officers attempting to arrest him.
One officer asked Floyd, “Are you on something right now?”
“Because you’re acting really erratic,” another said.
Floyd continually protested that he was claustrophobic and could not breathe when they tried to put him in a squad car.
“I can’t breathe,” he said several times, appearing to have an anxiety attack.
Officers Derek Chauvin and Tou Thao then arrived on the scene.
Chauvin placed his knee over Floyd’s neck, and previous video footage shows it remained there for nearly nine minutes.
Floyd continued to protest he could not breathe.
KMSP-TV reported that also among the new documents is a “memorandum outlining the findings from the independent medical examiners hired by the Floyd family, who list Floyd’s cause of death as ‘traumatic asphyxia due to the compression of his neck and back during restraint by police.'”
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