George Floyd died due to asphyxiation and not because of pre-existing heart complications, revealed an autopsy arranged by the family of the victim, agencies report. The agencies based their report on the statement of the family’s lawyer, Ben Crump, who said: “Independent medical examiners who conducted an autopsy of Floyd Sunday determined that asphyxiation from sustained pressure was the cause of death.”
Aleccia Wilson, Director at Autopsy and Forensic Sciences at the University of Michigan, said she had examined Floyd’s body. “The evidence is consistent with mechanical asphyxia as the cause of death, and homicide as the manner of death,” she told mediapersons.
As seen in a video shot by a bystander, Floyd died on May 27 after a policeman knelt on the 46-year-old African American’s neck for almost nine minutes. Floyd became unresponsive after almost three minutes. Floyd was detained on a minor charge of passing a counterfeit $20 bill.
The murder of Floyd had triggered nationwide protests and rioting in more than 140 cities. Derek Chauvin, the accused policeman was arrested on Friday and charged with third degree, or unintentional murder, based on an initial official autopsy that said Floyd died not of asphyxia but of “underlying health conditions including coronary artery disease and hypertensive heart disease.”
Floyd’s family took issue with that conclusion and have demanded Chauvin be charged with first degree murder, and that three other officers at the scene be arrested and charged as complicit with murder.
Wilson and another autopsy expert, Dr Michael Baden, said they disagreed with the official report, only the summary of which has been released as part of the court document for Chauvin’s arrest. “The autopsy shows that Floyd had no underlying medical problem that caused or contributed to his death.”