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tv   Hallie Jackson Reports  MSNBC  April 9, 2021 7:00am-8:00am PDT

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when a hailstorm hit, he needed his insurance to get it done right, right away. usaa. what you're made of, we're made for. usaa age is just a number. and mine's unlisted. try boost® high protein with 20 grams of protein for muscle health. versus 16 grams in ensure high protein. boost® high protein also has key nutrients for immune support. boost® high protein. good morning. i'm back with you in for hax who is on assignment. we're following breaking news on two fronts this morning. in just a few moments the start of what could be a make or break day at the prosecution and defense of derek chauvin.
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the question of how george floyd died takes center stage. we'll take you live to the courthouse just moments from now. we're also live at windsor castle where we learned a few moments ago that prince phillip has died at the age of 99. he had been released from the hospital just a little more than three weeks ago after one month after receiving treatments. just two months short of his 100th birthday. with an astounding 73 years spent married to queen elizabeth with 22,000 publish engagements. ralph sanchez is outside of
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windsor castle. what can you tell us? in a normal situation it is a massive apair. >> we're learning that his future really will be held here where he spent the last few months of his life living along side the queen. this would have been, under normal circumstances, a huge deal. it was never scheduled to be a full funeral. he said it would have been a fuss. because they are still in place here in the u.k., those plans are being scaled way back. they are being asked to turn out in large numbers for this event, and the event will be held here at windsor castle.
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the prince's body will be lying in rest at st. george's chapel here on the grounds. it is a chapel where the queen and the prince worshipped while they were living here. i will tell you small crowds of mourners are gathering here. they pay respect to the man that was the queen's side for 73 years. we're seeing crowds beginning to show up. they are paying their respects. the flag is at half-staff here and at buckingham palace. he said we're a kingdom united in grief and gratitude. grief at prince phillips passing, his decades of selfless service to this country. there will be eight days of
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mourning now. we have yet to see the queen herself who is at windsor castle. we don't know when we may see her or other members of the royal family. and we're still waiting for more details about how exactly this funeral will be carried out. one question hanging over it all will prince harry be able to make it back in time to make it back in time for his grandfather's funeral. it's not clear yet what the timeline is for a possible funeral. >> let's turning to minneapolis and what is expected to be a key moment at the trial for derek chauvin. the medical examiner that performed the autopsy of george floyd is set to testify today.
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gabe gutierrez is joining us now. we have legal and medical experts with us. and dr. christopher, he is a board certified forensic pathologist. andrew baker set to testify, how important is this? well, it is crucial medical expert. a middle age statement is that george floyd died because of his drug use and under lying medical condition. dr. andrew baker, the hannipan county medical examiner
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performed a controversial officer. the autopsy makes no mention of asphyxia. they say the leveling of fentanyl was extremely high. so that is all building towards the medical examiners testimony today. i can tell you there was medical experts yesterday, of course, a world renowned witness yesterday blew open the defense's argument saying that george floyd dies into to this be watching graphic
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videos. we spoke with some of those members. >> they just watched him die until he was lifeless. why would do you that to a human being. they sat on him like he was an animal or something. >> that is george floyd's brother there, but floyd's northeast, tiffany, was in the courtroom while some of the videos were played and she walked out because it was so difficult. the anticipation building for the medical examiner set to testify later here today. stephanie? >> gabe, thank you. mary, you know dr. baker, how critical is his testimony for the prosecution? >> yeah.
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i knew him in a capacity. it has been clear that the state has been distancing themselves from him. and i think his testimony is important, but i think dr. tobin was a fantastic expert witness yesterday. i think it will be interesting to see do they distance themselves from the testimony or do they try to con textualize it. an autopsy report is done, this one was done very quickly to try to get a cause of death to the family, the public, and the prosecution and there was a lot of information that dr. baker didn't know. he has not looked at hundreds of hours of body came like dr. tobin has. they want to distance themselves so much from dr. bake near they open doubt.
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that is reasonable doubt if they cannot agree on what happened here. >> if you're the defense, how do you handle a cross-examination of dr. baker? we're told we're going to get very graphic photos today. >> we are. i think you're going to hoen in on this because this is where reasonable doubt is going to set in on exactly what his findings were. they're going to hone in on the pathologist, but the toxicology. you will see them be very deliberate and careful about these questions. this is where reasonable doubt will be set in for these jurors. >> you also know dr. baker, complicating law enforcement,
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can you translate that? >> sure, what dr. baker is saying, of course the pulmonary arrest is just a stopping of the heart and the lungs, and really describes being dead. what is important near this diagnosis and the doctor has written a descriptive diagnosis where he includes police, law enforcement, subding mr. floyd, taking them into custody, restraining him, it is the under lying cause of the death. i hear a lot that he has not said this it was asphyxia specifically. and that's fine. he knows that he has to defend even in his report.
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the medical doctors are the most skrut needs. that means that sometimes we have to be more conservative. >> doctor, i realize that the defense had not made their case yet, but what you heard from the medical experts, has the prosecution done enough to refute that george floyd died of a overdose or a pre-existing condition? >> the testimony from the doctors yesterday, they both say it was asphyxia. reasonable professionals can differ lightly in their opinions. what we will hear from the doctor later today is something very close to that, except perhaps not going all of the way to asphyxia. it just means that you don't have oxygen getting to some of
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your organs, especially your brain. they say i don't know if it was asphyxia or a heart attack, but what set in motion the series of events was the police restraint and that neck compression. >> all right, thank you all so much. i appreciate it and we're going to bring you that witness testimony. it is set to begin just moments from now. we will take you there live. plus we have to cover two shootings within 24 hours. one just hours after president biden signed a series of executive actions aimed at tackling gun violence. we're going to take you live to the scene of both crimes for the very latest. and a former associate of matt gaetz is in court as we speak. we're going to go live to florida after we come back. go florida after we come back get...get mom.
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pressure building from two fronts on florida congressman matt gaetz. wince social is now planning on pleading guilty. that is coming in a court hearding on thursday, but now word on whether or not a cooperation agreement is in the works. he please not guilty to stocking, wire fraud, and state's exhibit trafficking on a minor. they are looking into whether or not they used the personality to look for twham they paid for sex that that he is being investigated for potential sex trafficking. he faces a new call in his own party to resieve.
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garrett, you just received a new statement about congressman gates retaining legal council, what can you tell us? >> he is bringing the calvary a little bit. this outside firm writes that gates is saying the people they will be taking the fight to smear his names with also hoods. they're both white collar criminal defense attorneys and the name might sound familiar to a lot of people. he has a long history in trump world as he defended the trump organization in the past, and if the name itself sounds familiar, you are probably thinking of his brother, mike, who was the last
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attorney general of the george w. bush administration. these are heavy hitters as part of leading, they say, the gates legal team here. we're going to learn more about this case, i expect. this investigation, i should be clear. no case yet. i want to be very careful. >> i want to ask you, has he said anything about greenburg? now he is potentially pleading to very serious things. >> they thought it would be an uncomfortable day from gates. on social media he has been some women that open his office, they may hear from him tonight. there was a public appearance since this scandal has taken off.
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the reports of informations will be very interesting. he laid down the gauntlet and said he will not resign or be pushed from the job that his northwest florida voters selected him to run. >> an unsigned letter was put out by gaetz office claiming to speak for the women that work for gaetz here in warz and in his florida officer rs speaking about his demeanor, behavior, that he has always been respectful, but there was no names attached. some of them are wrien in that letter, and people can make of that what they will. >> eight women who are spoken
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for. in my practice when you stand up for someone or something, you sign your name this story is not going away. another mass shooting left one person dead and six others injured. this one in brian text where a gunman open fired at a cabinet manufacturing if i felt. the 27-year-old suspect identified overnight has been charged with murder. investigators have not released a potential motive and in a totally separate shooting this week police are still trying to understand why a former nfl player shot and killed five people before taking his own life. a doctor, his wife, and their two grandchildren that were 9 and 5 years old. i want to go to morgan. police identified the suspect in
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section overnight, what are we learning about him and his potential motive. >> he is identified as larry bollin. at this moment, he is in jail charged with murder, but they're still actively searching for a potential motive around 2:30. when the gunshots were first reported at that business. by the time that police arrived they found several victims in that building. bollin had since flaed in a vehicle and state troopers gave per suit to a near by down. one trooper trying to apprehend the suspect at that place when he opened fire yet again striking that deputy who, at this point in time, that trooper, rather, is inside this hospital doing his best to recover. we know he is in serious but stable condition. in the meantime the atf is on the scene at that business trying to gather evidence and
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build their case as much as possible. employees described bollin as a kwee yet but humble plan. early checks into his general history involve no significant crime. more to come in this investigation and a tragic scene here in bryant. steph? >> take us to south carolina. any idea why this happened? what are investigators saying? >> we don't know exactly how the suspect knew the victims or why he did this. at this point the sheriff said there is nothing that makes sense to any of their officers or investigators on this case. nothing appeared to be taken from the home according to police. the suspect phillip adams lived at a house with his parents down the road from the victims. he used two guns, a .45 caliber
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and a .9 millimeter. his father thinks that football might have had something to do with this. >> i think the football messed him up. you know, i don't think he ever did anybody any harm. all i can tell you is we pray for the family. he was my doctor a long time ago. i know they were good folks down there, i don't know what happened. >> all right, thanks. okay. >> and we are going to leave it there. we have to move on and take you now back to minneapolis where we're going to dip into the trial of derek chauvin. dr. lindsey thomas on the stand right now. >> not living patients. a forensic pathologist may be consulted to help with the evaluation and interpretation of injuries in a living patient,
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but not in the treatment or clinical sense. >> so most of your work then is done on deceased people? >> correct. >> any specific types of deaths? >> the state statutes lists the types of deaths that have t be reported to the medical examiner. they are unnatural deaths, potentially suspicious deaths, that type of category of death. >> do you get special training on how to determine the cause and manner of death? >> yes. >> tell us something about the special training you receive. >> well shall i start back in medical school or just the end part? >> just the end part. >> i did a fellowship in forensic pathology which is a specified training program for doctors that want to be forensic
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pathologists to learn how to do medical-legal-death investigations. >> will you tell us what pathology is as a field of medicine? >> sure. pathologists are considered the doctors doctor. we don't directly treat patients but bro vied information to doctors that do treat patients. so if you have ever been to a lab and had blood drawn, that goes to a laboratory that is run by a pathologist. a clinical pathologist. blood count, chemistries, things like that. or if you have ever known someone that had a biopsy and was diagnosed with cancer, that's the pathology down by a anatomic pathologist. >> is a medical examiner a
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forensic pathologist? >> in minnesota a medical examiner is a forensic pathologist appointed by the county board of commissioners to be that county's medical examiner. >> so it's a public official? >> yes. >> so when you talk about the medical legal investigations, is that a fancy way of describing what pathologists do? >> yes, it's what the medical doctorest office does. there is a medical component and there may be a legal component. >> is it different from say a death in a hospital? >> yes, if someone dies in a hospital, those are usually deaths due to natural causes and they may have a medical death information in the sense that a pa tholgs might do an autopsy, but they would not dot full
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scope of the medical legal death investigation because those are mostly due to natural diseases. >> what does death investigation entail? >> the way a medical examiners office performs a death investigation i think a lot of people assume it's all about the autopsy. the physical examination of the body, and that's really just a tiny part of the death investigation. the death investigation really starts at very beginning when a death is found, a person is found deceased, or the office is notified of the death. we as medical examiners want to know all about that person. what's their past medical history? social history? family history? so we will do whatever we need to do to get that kind of history. then we want to know what happened, what were the terminal events, what happened around the time of their death? were they complaining of
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something? were they interacting with someone? were they driving? were they using, you know, machinery, something like that? then we'll look at the physical examination and that part of the exam might include x-rays, it could include specimens for tox clolg. for all kinds of other laboratory tests including looking at things under the microscope. so that is the physical exam part. then we'll look at the laboratory results. so that would be usually toxicology, but as i said it could be blood cultures or, you know, more recently probably been a lot of covid testing. that kind of thing. and then looking at the micro microscopic slides, and put it
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all together with everything else. >> the investigators that go to the scene may talk to family members. we may talk to medical providers to get someone's past medical history. we will often interview and talk with law enforcement officers if they were the people who responded. it could be paramedics, ems, troopers, just depends on the case. >> i want to ask you about a phrase used, terminal events. could you explain to the jury what is a terminal event? >> sure, when we're investigating a death as medical examiners, as i mentioned, we want to know as much as we can about this person leading up to
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their death. that often, how they lived, will provide us information about how they died. when i'm talking about terminal events, i am talking about what happened in the period of time around their deaths. leading shortly leading up to their death. so for example, he was out shoveling snow, he came in, clutched his chest, and fell over. that would be an example of a terminal event. or we know someone was driving a car, and went off of the road. that would be what the terminal events were. >> do you also rely on training and expertise on how injuries occur? >> yes, as a forensic pathologist, that is one of the things that we look at and learn about. when we see this type of injury we associate that with this type of event. >> what does the medical examiner then do at the conclusion of a death investigation? >> so the ultimate goal is to
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complete the information needed on the death certificate. specifically the cause and manner of death. >> is a report generated? >> yes. >> what is the nature of that report? >> one of the main reports that is generated would be considered the autopsy report and that is the report of the physical examination. but ultimately the death certificate is kind of the final report. >> you told us that you don't treat living patients, so fe wanted to a discussion about measuring lung volumes or air reserves, that is not your area, correct? >> no, that would not be me. by the time i see them none of that applies. >> are you currently employed? >> i work.
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i am semi-retired. i do consulting and i work part-time at medical examiners officers in reno and salt lake city. >> yes. >> they're places that i like how the office runs. i like still to be involved as a medical examiner. >> pretty good places to hike. >> and good places to hike, yes. >> so what did you do for your work before you were semi-retired. >> right before i retired i was at the hannipan county medical examiners office as an assistant. do you want me to go before that? >> yes, if you could tell us your work experience as a medical examiner and forensic pathologist. >> sure, initially i started after my training at the medical examiners office. and i was there for many years.
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and then in 1997 i joined the minnesota regional medical examiners office that was based in hastings. and then i was chief of that office for 13 years. we were the medical examiners office for eight counties in minnesota, the largest of which were dakota and scott counties. we also served as an autopsy referral service and medical examiners office for other counties in minnesota as well as wisconsin and even one in michigan. and then when our office out grew that space, dakota and scott counties merged with hannipan counties, and that's why i came back. >> over how many years have you performed services as a forensic pathologist? >> let's see, 37 now.
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36? >> in minnesota, how many counties? >> oh, gosh. well i was the direct medical examiner for eight counties. i worked in offices that have been consultant to dozens of other counties. >> and have you also performed those services in parts of wisconsin? >> yes. >> when did you stop working at the hannipan county medical examiners office. >> it was early 2017 i retired from hannipan county. >> how many autopsies would you estimate you have performed over your career? >> probably about 5,000 that i myself did. and then hundreds or thousands more where i assisted someone else someone else, or supervised, or participated in some way. >> so in 5,000 or so cases you
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determined the cause of death. >> actually way more than that, as medical examiners we don't just certify the cause and manner of the death for the cases we do autopsies are, there are numerous other cases that get reported where we don't do a physical examination. so for example, an elderly person falls in a nursing home and gets a hip fracture and dies a couple months later. that has to be reported to the medical examiners office. we will investigate that death by looking at the medical records and by doing all of what i talked about, getting family input, medical provider input, but we will generally not do a physical examination. but still, by law, we have to sign the death certificate. >> so you're still determining
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the cause and manner of death? >> correct, we're just not using a physical examination as a part of it. >> medical records primarily? >> yes. >> dr. thomas, are you licensed currently? >> yes, i'm licensed in minnesota, wisconsin, tennessee, nevada, and utah. >> do you also hold any board certifications. >> yes, i'm board certified by the american board of pathology in anatomic pathology, clinical pathology, and forensic pathology. >> have you worked with any professional organizations over the years related to forensic pathology? >> yes, i have been a member of many different organizations, minnesota medical association, american medical association, college of american pathologists. i have been on the board of the
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minnesota coroner's and medical examiners association probably 30 plus years. and then i'm a member of the national association of medical examiners and i was on that board. i was a member of their executive committee for a number of years. >> that goes by the acronym n.a.m.e.? >> yes. >> what was n.a.m.e. do? >> they're specifically for medical pathologists and medical examiners. they provide support to medical examiners. they provide information, guidelines, accreditation programs, inspection programs. lots of ways of assisting medical examiner offices. >> have you done any teaching?
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>> yes. i have been a clinical instructor here at the university of minnesota department of pathology. i have done lots of law enforcement training through the bureau of criminal apprehension here in minnesota, as well as oh my gosh, teaching everything from middle school science students through high school and college and all kinds of professional groups whether it is other forensic pathologists or other groups of law enforcement. you name the organization that comes into contact with death investigation and i have probably talked to some of them at some point. >> do you have any publications? >> that has not been a main focus of my career, but i was, i have several and early on was involved in a autopsy protocol that was ultimately published by the united nations that is still
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in use. >> so let's switch topics and talk about your experience testifying in courts. have you testified before in court? >> yes, probably over 100 times. >> is that predominantly in your role as a medical examiner? >> it is mostly in my role as a medical examiner. i did the autopsy and then the prosecution would call me to testify as to my findings. i have also testified as an expert witness, consultant, in cases where i didn't do the autopsy, but i was called by maybe a civil case by the defense or the plaintiff if they thought there was a wrongful death or some question about medical malpractice. something about that. and then i have also been consulted and testified in cases at the request of the defense. not where i did the autopsy, but
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where i reviewed someone else's work. and i consulted with the defense or testified. >> have you testified in minnesota courts? >> minnesota, iowa, wisconsin, north dakota, south dakota, pennsylvania. i think those are the ones. >> so, dr. thomas, are you being paid for your time and services in this case? could you tell us about that? how does it come about that you're not being paid for your time and services in this case. >> well, i didn't ask to be paid. >> did you reach out to the state or did the state reach out to you. >> no, no. you reached out to me and you know, i knew this was going to be important.
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and i felt felt like i wanted to contribute. >> what were you asked to do? >> i was asked to come to an independent conclusion for the cause and death and the mechanism for that cause. >> could you give the jurors a general sense of the kinds of materials that you review snd. >> may i look at my notes? >> yes, if you need to refresh your recollection? >> i looked at the medical examiner materials including the autopsy report and toxicology and photographs. and microscopic slides, things like that. i liked at the path medical history of mr. floyd, as well as health partners, medical
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records. then i looked at a lot of interviews. many, many videos including body worn camera videos, bystander videos, surveillance videos. some photographs, still photographs, timeline, and then some medical literature and textbooks. >> so were you the medical examiner who investigated or did the autopsy around the death of george floyd? >> no, that was the dr. andrew baker, the hannipan county medical examiner. >> do you dr. baker? >> i do. >> he was a pathology resident when i was on staff at hannipan county many years ago. when he did his fellowship i was one of the staff people there and after our officers merged i worked again with him at hannipan county. >> would you have been part of
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his training in his early formative years? >> yes. >> do you consider him a friend? >> yes. >> have you talked to him about this case? >> no, not since right after it happened. >> but you did review his report? >> yes. >> as well as mr. floyd's medical records? >> yes. >> did you review the history of terminal events from may of 2020. >> yeah, and what was kind of unique, absolutely unique in this case was the volume of materials that i had to review. i have never had a case like this that had such thorough documentation of the terminal events. >> and by way of the thorough documentation, what makes it so thorough in your opinion? >> the use of videos is unique in this case. certainly as medical examiners we use videos, but there is never a case that i have been
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involved with that had videos over such a long time frame and from so many different perspectives. >> are you aware then of dr. baker's conclusions then on the manner of death? >> yes. >> your honor, i would like to show exhibit 193 that has been stipulated to the subject of dr. baker's foundation. so first, dr. thomas, what did we see here on exhibit 193? >> this is a copy of the certificate of death of mr. floyd. >> so if we could highlight through the word underlined, just to make it a little big tore see. based on your review of the
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evidence, and the death certificate, do you agree with dr. baker's determination on the cause of death? >> yes, i do. >> is that by the word immediate on here? >> yes, the dual restraint and neck compression. >> have you, dr. thomas, formed an opinion about the mechanism of death. . >> yes. >> would you tell us what that is? >> i believe the primary mechanism of death is asphyxia or low oxygen. >> so we'll come back to the mechanism in just a minute. can you explain to the jury what this cause of death means and why you agree with it? >> well, it is kind of in two parts. there is the cardio pulmonary arrest that doesn't provide a lot of additional clarifying information because in a way everyone dies when your heart
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stops and your lungs stop, that's cardio pulmonary arrest. as a forensic pathologist i would use cardio pulmonary arrest to differentiate from cardiac arrest in is a death where both the heart and the lungs stopped working. the point is that it is due to law enforcement's restraint and compression. that is kind of what ultimately is the immediate cause of death is the restraint and compression. >> just so it is clear, does it mean heart attack? >> no. >> does it mean fatal arrhythmia as a primary cause of death? >> no. >> it simply means the heart and the lungs have stopped? >> correct. >> it is another way to describe death itself?
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>> right. >> can you explain what is referred to, looking here at the terms, sub dual restraint and neck compression? >> those were activities by the law enforcement agency officers involved. subdual is subduing someone. trying to restrain them. it is, in mr. floyd's case, it involved handcuffing him. his positioning on the ground. the prone position, the people kneeling on him. and the neck compression is the knee on the neck specifically. additionally there was some back and other things being compressed by the officers. >> so if you put all of this together, cardio pulmonary
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arrest complicated law enforcement sub dual restraint and neck compression, what does that mean? >> what it means to me is the activities of the law enforcement officers resulted in mr. floyd's death and specifically the activities were the subdual, the restraint, and the neck compression. >> does this match your own conclusion? >> yes. >> would you tell us what you reviewed to reach that conclusion? >> all of the things that i mentioned earlier. the -- again, what is unique is that often i would just review the medical examiner case file and that would provide information about what the cause and manner of death is. but in this case, the autopsy itself didn't tell me the cause and manner of death and it
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really required getting all of the other information, specifically the video evidence of the terminal events to conclude the cause of death and the manner of death. >> when you make mechanism of death, would you tell us what mechanism of death means? >> so, cause of death is, what's the thing, the disease or the injury or the process that caused someone's death. but the mechanism is kind of what was, what was going on in the body at that time? for example, the cause of death might be a gunshot death, but the mechanism might be blood loss related to the gunshot wound or an infection that complicated that gunshot wound down the road, something like that. it's more the -- what was actually happening at the body
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level that resulted in the cause of death. >> focusing in on the mechanism of death here, how is it that the officer's subduing cause the death. >> it was asphyxia or low oxygen. mr. floyd was in a position, because of the subding restraint and compression where he was unable to get enough oxygen in to maintain his body functions. >> what's required for normal breathing, dr. thomas? >> what is required? well, there are three components. you have to be able to get air in. so you have to have what's called a patent airway. nose, mouth, soft tissue of the
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neck, larynx, trachea, all of that has to be open. at the level of the lungs itself, there has to be adequate air exchange between oxygen coming in, carbon dioxide going out. and then finally, the way the lungs work is it's like a bellows that when you suck in air, your diaphragm drops and pulls air in. and then when you relax, the diaphragm collapses and pushes air out. all three of those things have to be functioning in order to get adequate oxygen in. if someone is smothered or strangled or inhale hot dog or pneumonia so their lungs are filled, then their airway is
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obstructed so there isn't adequate oxygen coming in. if someone is in an environment where there isn't enough oxygen, for example, in a closed garage in which an old car has been running, there may be way high carbon monoxide. in that case, they are perfectly able to breathe in and out, but there isn't enough oxygen. then the third would be if there's some kind of restriction such that your chest can't expand, your diaphragm can't expand. the bellows function isn't working. if any one of those components isn't working, then the result will be this mechanism of inadequate oxygen. >> doctor, how does narrowing of the hypopharynx fit into this? >> the example i would give that people are probably most familiar with is sleep apnea or snoring. if you, yourself, or have a
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partner that snores, you know the hypopharynx, the soft tissues at the back of your throat, will kind of collapse because there's inadequate air coming either forcing it out or forcing it in, which is why a cpap machine works. it forces air through that floppy area. if that collapses, then it makes it difficult to get air in. >> dr. thomas, what do you rely on to reach your conclusion that low oxygen was the mechanism of death? >> in this case, it was primarily the evidence from the terminal events, the video evidence that show mr. floyd in a position where he was unable to adequately breathe. >> how does the autopsy report
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itself assist you or not? >> the way the autopsy really helps is it's great for ruling things out. in this case, the autopsy ruled out, for example, underlying lung disease. mr. floyd had had a history of covid, but there was not evidence in his lungs at the time of his death that he had any lung disease that would impair his ability to breathe. and it ruled out injuries to the neck that suggest that his -- the bones in his neck had been broken, for example. and it ruled out a stroke. he didn't have a stroke. so it wasn't like his blood pressure was so high that he ruptured a vessel in his brain. he didn't have an aneurysm. he didn't have -- which is a ruptured vessel. he didn't have an embolism, a blood clot. he didn't rupture his heart. he didn't have an old heart attack or a recent heart attack
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or what's called myocardial infarc. the autopsy is great for ruling things out. >> to focus on one of those, you said the autopsy ruled out a recent myocardial infarction? >> yes. >> how does it do that? >> well, when a forensic pathologist examines a heart, one of the things they look at is the coronary arteries, which are the vessels that supply blood and nutrients to the heart muscle. then the pathologist will examine the muscle of the heart. if someone has had a recent heart attack, there may be evidence in the heart muscle of that damage. or if they have had a prior, an older heart attack, there will be scarring in the heart muscle that shows that area of damage.
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>> thank you, doctor. is it normal as a part of your death investigation then to seek out and to look at the video? >> yes. oh, yes. >> in this case, is there any particular video footage that struck you as more significant than others, from what you saw? >> oh, gosh, this case there were so many. the body-worn camera videos were very instructive because they started -- well, and the cup foods video, because they showed how mr. floyd was behaving long before law enforcement interaction. then the body-worn cameras show the early interactions before there was any of this restraint and compression. then they show the interactions during the restraint. the bystander videos are really
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instructive as well as the surveillance videos from the scene at showing kind of during the time of the restraint. there were lots, i would say. >> in terms of the video footage then either ruling in a cause or ruling out a cause, how did it inform your assessments about the cause of death having looked at video? >> well, it helped me rule in a cause and also rule out causes, i would say. >> did it help you determine whether this was what i might refer to as a lights out kind of death, a sudden death? >> right. so what i observed from all of these videos is this was not a sudden death. mr. floyd did not -- it's not like this snow shoveling where somebody collapses and clutches their chest and falls over.
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there was nothing sudden about his death. that's what i would have expected if it was a cardiac arrhythmia or abnormal beating of the heart. typically, those are someone really falls over pretty quickly. this was not that. likewise, it was not the type of death reported in fentanyl overdose, for example, where someone becomes very sleepy and then just sort of gradually calmly, peacefully stops breathing. this was not that kind of a death. i felt comfortable ruling out those as causes of death. then on the flip side, i could clearly see from watching the video what happens to mr. floyd during this restraint and compression. what happens to his breathing is it gradually becomes more
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difficult and then stops. >> doctor, tell us, what is the bellows function? >> well, it's what your diaphragm does along with the muscles in between your ribs. so when you take in a deep breath, what's happening is your rib cage is expanding. that then forces the lungs to open up. that's when draws air in. when someone is intubated in, like, surgery or something, it's sort of the opposite of that, because your diaphragm is paralyzed. somebody has to force air in. under normal breathing circumstances, you just -- it's the bellows. it's the pulling air in. >> what did the video tell you? what did you see in it that had to do with the bellows function? >> right. well, he -- mr. floyd is in a position -- first o

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