Why is it every time a case where a black man dies at the hands of a white police officer, after all the rioting gets rolling, we find out that the officer acted in self-defense or some other cause of death is responsible?
It happened with Trayvon Martin. It happened with Michael Brown. And now, it seems, it’s happening with George Floyd.
The lawyer for the police officer (Derek Chauvin) who was detaining George Floyd when he died, Eric J. Nelson, finally got a look at the toxicology report from Floyd’s autopsy, and in it were details that most definitely might explain why the man said he couldn’t breathe.
“Put simply, Mr. Floyd could not breathe because he had ingested a lethal dose of fentanyl and, possibly, a speedball,” a portion of the motion read. “Combined with sickle cell trait, his pre-existing heart conditions, Mr. Floyd’s use of fentanyl and methamphetamine most likely killed him. Adding fentanyl and methamphetamine to Mr. Floyd’s existing health issues was tantamount to lighting a fuse on a bomb.”
A speedball is a fentanyl and methamphetamine combined. Floyd also had high blood pressure and multiple heart issues. A fentanyl overdose does include fluid in the lungs.
The death initially ruled a homicide due to the techniques the police were alleged to have used to restrain Floyd. However, no neck bruising was found during the autopsy.
Hennepin County Medical Examiner Dr. Andrew Baker also added that if Floyd were found dead in any other circumstance — in this case, “home alone and no other apparent causes, this could be acceptable to call an [overdose].”
As it happens, the body cam footage does show Floyd having a white spot – a tablet – on his tongue. It is believed he swallowed the illegal drugs to avoid being caught with them on his person.
“All [Floyd] had to do is sit in the police car, like every other defendant who is initially arrested. While attempting to avoid his arrest, all by himself, Mr. Floyd overdosed on Fentanyl,” Gray wrote in the motion. “Given his intoxication level, breathing would have been difficult at best. Mr. Floyd’s intentional failure to obey commands, coupled with his overdosing, contributed to his own death.”