George Floyd’s family recently released the results of an independent autopsy they had performed on his body. The results of the examination — presented in a press release — listed his cause of death as “asphyxiation due to neck and back compression that led to a lack of blood flow to the brain.”
“Sustained pressure on the right side of Mr. Floyd’s carotid artery impeded blood flow to the brain, and weight on his back impeded his ability to breathe.”
Dr. Michael Baden and Dr. Allecia Wilson conducted the independent autopsy at the family’s request, per CBS News. Dr. Baden, who is a former chief medical examiner of New York City, performed an autopsy of Eric Gardner in 2014. Gardner died in police custody while saying, “I can’t breathe.” Floyd’s death was tragically similar, as he said the same thing before he died while in the custody of Minneapolis police officers last Monday. The doctors noted that Floyd’s death is a homicide that occurred due to the compressive pressure of a knee to the neck and back, and they believe that the evidence showed that Floyd died at the scene. They do not think that any underlying health issues played a role in Floyd’s cause of death, and they did not find any evidence of heart disease in his coronary arteries.
Attorney representing George Floyd’s family releases results of independent autopsy, which determined that asphyxiation from sustained pressure was the cause of death. #GeorgeFloyd pic.twitter.com/vkGh5CGd89— Ryan Faircloth (@RyanFaircloth) June 1, 2020
The family conducted an independent autopsy after the Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s Office released autopsy results indicating that Floyd died of underlying health issues. The official autopsy did not find any evidence of traumatic asphyxia or strangulation.
Lead Attorney Ben Crump — who is a nationally renowned civil rights and personal injury lawyer working for the Floyd family — called Floyd’s death a “public execution.” He called for Derek Chauvin to be charged with first-degree murder. Chauvin is the now-fired officer who kept his knee on Floyd’s neck for more than eight minutes while three other officers stood near him. The other three officers were also terminated. Crump went on to add that the three other officers should be arrested and charged to the fullest extent of the law. Crump also noted that Floyd’s death would not be in vain.
There will be a memorial for Floyd in Minneapolis, one held on Thursday from 1 to 3 p.m., according to Reuters via Twitter. On Saturday, another memorial in North Carolina — where Floyd was born — will begin at 1 p.m. Floyd’s funeral will be held in Houston, Texas, on Tuesday, June 9, with viewing the evening before. Crump, speaking on behalf of the family, condemned the looting and violence that occurred over the weekend. He also praised the peaceful protests, and asked the public to continue to effect change.