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Family of George Floyd seeks independent autopsy

The family's attorney announced on social media Saturday after results were released by the Hennepin County Medical Examiner.
Credit: Heidi Wigdahl
Demonstrators gathered at 38th and Chicago in late May to demand justice for Floyd.

MINNEAPOLIS — Announced in a statement released in social media Saturday morning, the attorney for the family of George Floyd says they are seeking an independent autopsy after findings by the Hennepin County Medical Examiner.  

According to Attorney Benjamin Crump, the preliminary results released by the medical examiner show Floyd's cause of death to be the "combined effects of Mr. Floyd's being restrained by police, underlying health conditions and any potential intoxicants in his system."

In the statement, Crump writes that "because the results do not address in detail the effect of purposeful use of force on Mr. Floyd's neck and the extent of Mr. Floyd's suffering at the hands of police, the family has chosen to engage an independent medical examiner to conduct their own autopsy."

The statement lists Dr. Michael Baden, a forensic pathologist, and Dr. Alleca Wilson, and that the autopsy will be conducted in the Minneapolis area in the next few days. 

Findings of that report will be made public, according to Crump. 

The autopsy report released by the Hennepin County Medical Examiner is pending but preliminary findings show that Floyd had underlying health conditions including coronary artery disease and hypertensive heart disease. "The combined effects of Mr. Floyd being restrained by the police, his underlying health conditions and any potential intoxicants in his system likely contributed to his death," the report says, with no evidence of traumatic asphyxia or strangulation.

Prosecutors ended the criminal complaint filed Friday against former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, by saying, "The defendant had his knee on Mr. Floyd’s neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds in total. Two minutes and 53 seconds of this was after Mr. Floyd was non-responsive. Police are trained that this type of restraint with a subject in a prone position is inherently dangerous."

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