New court documents have uncovered two memorandums, dated May 26 and June 1, that suggest Chief Hennepin County Medical Examiner Dr. Andrew Baker concluded George Floyd likely died from a fentanyl overdose and found “no physical evidence suggesting” that he died of asphyxiation.
“AB (Andrew Baker) said that if Mr. Floyd had been found dead in his home (or anywhere else) and there were no other contributing factors he would conclude that it was an overdose death,” says a memo dated June 1, outlining a May 31 virtual with Dr. Baker.
The memos seemingly run contrary to the Armed Forces medical examiner and Hennepin County medical examiner’s final conclusion that Floyd’s death was a homicide.
“His death was caused by the police subdual and restraint in the setting of severe hypertensive atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, and methamphetamine and fentanyl intoxication,” the Armed Forces medical examiner found, according to FOX 9.
Floyd died on May 25 following an arrest during which an officer knelt on the 46-year-old’s neck for several minutes. Video clips of the incident circulated online and quickly went viral, sparking destructive and deadly riots across the nation.
However, earlier this month, body camera footage of the arrest was leaked by the Daily Mail, offering more context to the incident.
As reported by FOX 9, one memorandum filed May 26 regarding a virtual meeting with Dr. Baker said that the medical examiner concluded that “the autopsy revealed no physical evidence suggesting that Mr. Floyd died of asphyxiation.”
“Baker told the attorney his investigation was incomplete pending a toxicology report, however,” the report added.
The other memorandum, filed June 1, showed that Baker said “Floyd’s level of fentanyl was ‘pretty high,’ and a potentially ‘fatal level,’” FOX 9 reported.
The June 1 memo added: “AB (Andrew Baker) said that if Mr. Floyd had been found dead in his home (or anywhere else) and there were no other contributing factors he would conclude that it was an overdose death.”
Independent medical examiners hired by the Floyd family list the 46-year-old’s death as “traumatic asphyxia due to the compression of his neck and back during restraint by police,” the court filings show.
The memo “admits the findings could be incomplete because they were awaiting microscopic slides, pictures and other evidence from the Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s report,” FOX 9 noted.
As The Daily Wire reported this month, Earl Gray, an attorney for Thomas Lane, one of the four former Minneapolis police officers charged in the death of Floyd, said charges should be dropped against his client because Floyd died from a fentanyl overdose.
“All he 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 a 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.”