George Floyd Tested Positive for COVID-19: Autopsy

June 3, 2020 Updated: June 4, 2020

A full autopsy report released June 3 for George Floyd, who died last week in police custody in Minneapolis after an officer kneeled on his neck for nearly nine minutes, shows that the 46-year-old had previously tested positive for the CCP virus.

The full report from the Hennepin County Medical Examiner shows that Floyd tested positive for the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, commonly referred to as the novel coronavirus, on April 3. He was reported as being asymptomatic.

Chief Medical Examiner Andrew Baker’s 20-page report, which was released with the permission of Floyd’s family, also found that while Floyd’s lungs appeared healthy, his heart had some narrowing arteries.

The news comes after the Hennepin Medical Examiner in Minneapolis released its final public report on the cause of death for Floyd on Monday, which classified his manner of death on May 25 as a homicide.

It also noted that the father-of-two had recently used methamphetamine, was under the influence of fentanyl, and had heart issues at the time of his death. These were not listed under “cause of death.”

The examiner’s office stated (pdf) that Floyd suffered “cardiopulmonary arrest complicating law enforcement subdual, restraint, and neck compression,” adding that he “experienced a cardiopulmonary arrest while being restrained by law enforcement officer(s).”

The full report’s footnotes noted that signs of fentanyl toxicity can include “severe respiratory depression” and seizures.

A widely circulated video showed Floyd lying face-down on the pavement and handcuffed, as an officer was seen kneeling on the man’s neck for nearly 9 minutes. Meanwhile, the footage showed Floyd telling officers that he couldn’t breathe before his body went motionless.

According to a Minneapolis Fire Department report (pdf), Floyd was unresponsive and “pulseless” when he was being transported into an ambulance by paramedics from the site of his arrest to the hospital.

The police officer who was seen kneeling on the man’s neck, Derek Chauvin, on Tuesday had his charges upgraded from third-degree murder, to second-degree murder charges. Under Minnesota law, second-degree murder is defined as when a person causes the death of another person with intent without premeditation.

The three other police officers involved in the arrest have since been fired, and have been charged with aiding and abetting his murder, the Minnesota Attorney General’s Office revealed Tuesday.

police officers who arrested george floyd
This combination of photos provided by the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office in Minnesota on Wednesday, June 3, 2020, shows Derek Chauvin, from left, J. Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao. Chauvin is charged with second-degree murder of George Floyd. Kueng, Lane and Thao have been charged with aiding and abetting Chauvin. (Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office via AP)

The preliminary autopsy findings by the Hennepin County Medical Examiner, which showed that Floyd did not die due to strangulation or traumatic oxygen deprivation, was decried by Floyd family attorney, Ben Crump.

According to Floyd’s family, the results of a second independent autopsy they commissioned said that “sustained pressure on the right side of Floyd’s carotid artery impeded blood flow to the brain, and weight on his back impeded his ability to breathe.”

The independent autopsy was carried out by famed forensic pathologist Dr. Michael Baden, who was hired by disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein’s brother to observe Epstein’s autopsy following his death in a jail cell last year.

Jack Phillips and The Associated Press contributed to this report.