Tuesday, 26 October, 2021


Lack of oxygen killed George Floyd, not drugs

Kilkenny man is expert witness at Derek Chauvin murder trial in US Disturbing photo detail emerges in George Floyd murder trial
Noah Ferguson | 10 April, 2021, 08:38

The combination of Chauvin keeping his knee on Floyd's neck for more than 90 percent of the time that Floyd was on the ground, Chauvin's other knee on Floyd's back for a majority of the time, Floyd's hands cuffed behind his back, and him being pushed into the street facedown cut off oxygen to his brain and caused his heart to stop, Tobin said.

Bystander video of Mr 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 US.

Baker's testimony marked the 10th day of the murder trail of Chauvin, a former Minneapolis police officer who is facing trial on charges of second-degree unintentional murder; third-degree murder; and second-degree manslaughter in connection with the death of Floyd.

"So in your opinion", Nelson asked, "both the heart disease as well as the history of hypertension and the drugs that were in his system played a role in Mr. Floyd's death?"

Dr Baker noted that the amount of fentanyl found in Mr Floyd's system would be a "fatal level" in other circumstances, for instance if he had been found "home alone in his locked residence with no evidence of trauma".

George Floyd's death was caused by the manner in which he was restrained by police officers, an expert has told the court during Derek Chauvin's murder trial.

Forensic toxicologist Daniel Isenschmid, whose laboratory tested Mr Floyd's blood and urine samples following his death, said there was evidence that some of the fentanyl had metabolised, meaning that an overdose was less likely. "I don't have a photograph of Mr. Floyd's spleen or Mr. Floyd's liver, either, because those were also grossly normal".

The lack of oxygen resulted in brain damage and caused his heart to stop, he told the court, saying it was nearly "as if a surgeon had gone in and removed" Mr Floyd's lung.

The outcome of the high profile trial is being closely watched after video of the arrest of Floyd captured by a bystander prompted widespread outrage, setting off protests over race and police brutality across the USA and around the world.

"I was aware that at least one video had gone viral on the internet, but I intentionally chose not to look at that until I had examined Mr Floyd", said Dr Baker.

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.

Asked to explain cardiopulmonary arrest, Baker said that was "fancy medical lingo for the heart and the lungs stopped".

Mr Chauvin's knee stayed on Floyd's neck for three more minutes.

Thomas said the videos made clear this was not a sudden death from a heart attack. The only thing you found would be these facts about his heart. "It's what I put on the death certificate last June".

"The Midnight Sky" actor in the past had also spoken about the tragic death of Floyd. "Is that true?" Blackwell asked.

"Aren't those questions a lot like asking, 'Mrs".

Eric Nelson, Chauvin's lead lawyer, objected to the hands-on anatomy lessons.

For the first time, a seat designated for Chauvin's family was occupied Friday, by a woman.

A 19-year veteran of the Minneapolis Police Department, Chauvin was sacked from the force after Floyd's death.

One of the jurors was questioned Friday morning by Judge Peter Cahill about "some concerns expressed" over outside influences, per the reports from two reporters inside the courtroom.

Thomas and the jury reviewed photos of Floyd's injuries, including those she described as "superficial injuries" to his face, shoulders and wrists that support what she saw in the videos of his death: that Floyd was trying to push his body into a position where he could breathe.

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