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So what does "no physical findings that support a diagnosis of traumatic asphyxia or strangulation" mean?… #GeorgeFloyd - a thread /1
Without seeing the actual autopsy report or autopsy photos it’s hard to tell based on that phrase alone. Generally it means that there’s no trauma to the front strap muscles of the neck, hyoid bone, thyroid or laryngeal fractures. /2
But a broad, even force on the side of the neck wouldn’t necessarily leave much of a mark on the strap muscles of the front of the neck the way a hand would in manual strangulation. /3
What’s obvious in the photo from the video is that the pressure was applied at the side of Mr. Floyd’s neck. Notice how much darker his face looks compared to his shoulder in this still shot. /4
That may be because blood flow is going to the head but isn’t sufficiently draining. All you need is 11 pounds of pressure to collapse the carotid arteries. But less than that is needed to restrict flow back out through the jugular veins. /5
Pressure buildup in the blood vessels of the face may burst the delicate blood vessels in the facial skin & whites of the eyes (sclera) causing petechial hemorrhages. /6
These may be subtle and they can also occur due to back pressure caused by heart failure or just by dying in a face-down position /7
Regardless of the underlying victim’s medical conditions or level of intoxication prolonged pressure on the neck can kill in minutes. On video there is sustained pressure being applied for over 4 minutes before he passes out & many minutes more after that. /8
I find it incredibly hard to believe there would be no evidence at all of injury to the neck at autopsy based on what we see in the bystander video. /9
And most importantly regardless of the anatomic findings, the video is strong evidence that Mr. Floyd most likely would not have died at the moment he did were it not but for the stress of having pressure applied to his neck. That makes this a homicide. /Fin
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