Crime Expert: Lack of oxygen killed George Floyd, not drugs
Derek Chauvin used force against arrestees 6 other times. The jury in the George Floyd case won't hear about them.
Prosecutors tried to introduce six incidents in which they say Derek Chauvin used unreasonable force on people. The judge didn't allow them.The jury considering murder and manslaughter charges against Chauvin won't hear about any of them. And their verdict may be influenced as much by what they don't know as what they do.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) —died of a lack of oxygen from the way he was held down by police, a retired forensic pathologist testified Friday at former Officer Derek Chauvin's murder trial.
The testimony of Lindsey Thomas, who retired in 2017 from the Hennepin County Medical Examiner's office in Minneapolis, bolstered the findings of other experts on Thursday who rejected the defense theory that Floyd’s drug use and underlying health problems killed him.
Duty sergeant: Officers could have ended Floyd restraint
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A Minneapolis police supervisory sergeant who was on duty the night George Floyd died testified that he believes the officers who restrained Floyd could have ended it after he stopped resisting. David Pleoger testified Thursday at the trial of since-fired officer Derek Chauvin, who is charged with murder and manslaughter in Floyd's death. He noted that officers are trained to roll people on their side to help with their breathing after they have been restrained in the prone position.
Thomas did not work on Floyd's case but agreed with her former colleague Hennepin County Medical Examiner Andrew Baker that Floyd died from cardiopulmonary arrest complicated by the way law enforcement restrained him and compressed his neck.
But she went further in saying “the primary mechanism of death is asphyxia, or low oxygen.”
Police chief: Fired cop broke policy in pinning Floyd
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Minneapolis police chief who called George Floyd's death “murder” soon after it happened testified that Officer Derek Chauvin had clearly violated department policy when he pinned Floyd's neck beneath his knee for more than 9 minutes. Continuing to kneel on Floyd's neck once he was handcuffed behind his back and lying on his stomach was “in no way, shape or form” part of department policy or training, "and it is certainlyContinuing to kneel on Floyd's neck once he was handcuffed behind his back and lying on his stomach was “in no way, shape or form” part of department policy or training, "and it is certainly not part of our ethics or our values,” Police Chief Medaria Arradondo said Monday on D
“This is a death where both the heart and lungs stopped working. The point is, it’s due to law enforcement subdual, restraint and compression,” Thomas said. “The activities of the law enforcement officers resulted in Mr. Floyd’s death.”
Thomas said she reached her conclusion primarily from the video, which showed Floyd "in a position where he was unable to adequately breathe.”
The autopsy itself ruled out heart attack, aneurysm, COVID-19 and other factors, and Thomas said it was not a drug overdose death, either.
Key takeaways from Day 8 of the Derek Chauvin trial
Key takeaways from Day 8 of the Derek Chauvin trial in George Floyd's death Los Angeles Police Department Sgt. Jody Stiger -- a veteran use-of-force trainer, who is testifying as a paid expert witness for the prosecution -- said his review of video evidence in Floyd's arrested indicated that Chauvin was also using a "pain compliance technique" on Floyd's handcuffed left hand.
“There is no evidence to suggest he would have died that night except for the interactions with law enforcement,” she said.
Baker was expected to testify later.
Thomas' testimony came a day after other medical experts also said Floyd died of a lack of oxygen.
“A healthy person subjected to what Mr. Floyd was subjected to would have died,” prosecution witness Dr. Martin Tobin, a lung and critical care specialist at the Edward Hines Jr. VA Hospital and Loyola University’s medical school in Illinois, testified Thursday.
Tobin said the lack of oxygen resulted in brain damage and caused Floyd's heart to stop.
Medical witnesses clash with defense over George Floyd's death
Medical personnel from various backgrounds have testified in Derek Chauvin's trial, painting a grave picture of George Floyd's last moments. Paramedics found Floyd had no pulse upon arriving at the scene, and a respiratory expert said even a healthy person would have died under the restraints Chauvin used on Floyd.
Chauvin, 45, is charged with murder and manslaughter in Floyd’s death May 25 after kneeling on him for what prosecutors say was 9 1/2 minutes. Floyd was arrested outside a neighborhood market after being accused of trying to pass a counterfeit $20 bill.
Bystander video of Floyd crying that he couldn’t breathe as onlookers yelled at the white officer to get off him sparked protests and scattered violence around the U.S.
Chauvin attorney Eric Nelson has argued that Chauvin did what he was trained to do and that Floyd’s death was caused by illegal drugs and underlying medical problems, including high blood pressure and heart disease. An autopsy found fentanyl and methamphetamine in his system.
Floyd's death certificate listed other contributing conditions: narrowed arteries, high blood pressure, fentanyl intoxication and recent methamphetamine use. But Thomas said that they did not directly cause his death and that such factors are commonly included on death certificates to inform public health officials.
Inside Cup Foods, where it seems George Floyd never left
Thanks to videos taken inside and outside the Cup Foods store in South Minneapolis, its aisles and customers are now known around the world. It's linked forever to the death of George Floyd and racial injustice in the United States. Yet Cup Foods is still open for business, selling batteries, a pack of gum or a bag of spinach.Once inside, you see the aisle where Floyd chatted with another customer and staff before asking to buy a pack of cigarettes. It's a scene that was replayed in court in the trial of the man accused of killing him, former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin.
Instead, Floyd died because the position of his body — lying on his stomach, his hands cuffed behind his back and officers pressing their body weight into him — made it impossible to breathe, said Thomas, who called Floyd's death “so well-documented” because of extensive video evidence.
On Thursday, Tobin used easy-to-understand language and even loosened his tie to explain medical concepts, telling the jury that Floyd's breathing was severely constricted while Chauvin and two other Minneapolis officers held the 46-year-old Black man down.
Tobin,for what prosecutors say was , testified that Chauvin's knee was “virtually on the neck” more than 90% of the time.
He said several other factors also made it difficult for Floyd to breathe: officers lifting up on the suspect's handcuffs, the hard pavement, his prone position, his turned head and a knee on his back.
EXPLAINER: Prosecution explores Floyd's 'spark of life'
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Prosecutors trying a white former Minneapolis police officer in George Floyd’s death put one of Floyd’s brothers on the witness stand Monday in a further effort to humanize him for the jury and counter the defense narrative that Floyd was at least partially responsible for his own death due to his use of illegal drugs. Philonise Floyd, who has frequently occupied the Floyd family's sole seat in the socially distanced courtroom, was allowed to testify under a legal doctrine called “spark of life.
Tobin also testified that just because Floyd was talking and can be seen moving on video doesn’t mean he was breathing adequately. He said a leg movement seen in the footage was an involuntary sign of a fatal brain injury, and that a person can continue to speak until the airway narrows to 15%, after which “you are in deep trouble.”
Officers can be heard on video telling Floyd that.
Find AP’s full coverage of the death of George Floyd at:
Webber reported from Fenton, Michigan.
Defense set to take turn in ex-cop's trial in Floyd death .
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The defense for a former Minneapolis police officer charged in George Floyd's death was set to start presenting its case Tuesday, following 11 days of a prosecution narrative that combined wrenching video with clinical analysis by medical and use-of-force experts to condemn Derek Chauvin's actions. Prosecutors called their final witnesses Monday, leaving only some administrative matters before they were expected to rest Tuesday. Once the defense takes over, Chauvin attorney Eric Nelson is expected to have his own experts testify that it was Floyd's drug use and bad heart, not Chauvin's actions, that killed him.