George Floyd ‘Overdosed On Fentanyl’-Attorney For Ex-Minneapolis Police Officer

George Floyd

George Floyd died from a Fentanyl Drug overdose: Attorney

The attorney for one of four former Minneapolis police officers charged in the death of George Floyd says charges should be dropped against his client because George Floyd died from a drug overdose.

Thomas Lane is facing charges of aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter for his role in George Floyd’s May 25 arrest that ended in Floyd’s death at a nearby hospital. Earl Gray, Lane’s defense attorney, filed a motion in court on Monday alleging that GEorge Floyd contributed to his own death by consuming a lethal amount of fentanyl, according to FOX 9 in Minnesota.

“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. “Given his intoxication level, breathing would have been difficult at best. Mr. George Floyd’s intentional failure to obey commands, coupled with his overdosing, contributed to his own death.”

George Floyd Mural.jpg?auto=format&fit=crop&ar=16%3A9&ixlib=react 9.0
Stephanie Keith/Getty Images

Gray says that bodycam footage from Lane, who was the first officer to confront George Floyd, shows Floyd with “a white spot on the left side of his tongue” that resembles “2 milligrams of fentanyl, a lethal dose.”

“Rather than comply with Officer Lane’s reasonable instructions, [Floyd] turns his head away at 20:09:45; at 20:09:48, the white spot is gone,” Gray says.

The Hennepin County medical examiner said that Floyd tested positive for fentanyl intoxication, as well as recent methamphetamine use. The medical examiner ruled George Floyd’s death a homicide but notes that “manner of death classification is a statutory function of the medical examiner” and “is not a legal determination of culpability or intent, and should not be used to usurp the judicial process.”

The medical examiner found cuts and abrasions over George Floyd’s body but no sign of significant or “life-threatening” injury or trauma, except for a cracked rib due to medical workers attempting to resuscitate Floyd at the hospital.

Lane was fired from the Minneapolis Police Department and charged in George Floyd’s death along with three other former officers. J. Alexander Kueng and Tou Thao are facing similar charges as Lane, while Derek Chauvin is facing charges of second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter after he pressed his knee to Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes during the arrest.

The officers restrained Floyd on the ground after he pushed himself out of the back of a squad car while complaining about claustrophobia and saying that he could not breathe, bodycam footage that surfaced in early August shows.

As The Daily Wire reports:

Lane goes over to the other side of the car to pull Floyd into it. Floyd begins yelling and repeatedly claiming he “can’t breathe.” After a struggle between Floyd and several officers, Floyd ends up on the ground beside the vehicle as Officer Derek Chauvin, 44, places his knee on his neck. Chauvin would go on to hold his knee on Floyd’s neck for over eight minutes, as shown in widely-publicized video that led to violent protests nationwide.

Fentanly Drug Claims

In Monday’s filingGray pointed to police body cam footage to claim that it appears Floyd swallowed “2 milligrams of fentanyl,” calling it “a lethal dose.”

Gray claimed that Floyd swallowed the drugs while officers were attempting to take him into custody – pointing to a white spot on Floyd’s tongue which, Gray claims, disappeared in the bodycam footage.

Court documents read: “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.

“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.”

Toxicology testing found fentanyl and evidence of recent methamphetamine use in Floyd’s system, according to The Hennepin County Medical Examiner’s autopsy report.

Gray is expected to present his arguments for throwing out the charges against Lane at the case’s next court hearing, on September 11.

The attorney had already submitted a filing in July petitioning the court to throw out the charges against Lane because they were legally deficient, the Star Tribune reported.

The filing also went into detail about Floyd’s criminal background and his use of drugs.

Responding to those details, Floyd’s aunt, Angela Harrelson, and uncle, Selwyn Jones, said they felt disappointed Gray had brought up their nephew’s past in an attempt condone the officers’ actions.

“Regardless of his past, nothing justifies the way he died,” Harrelson told the Star Tribune.

“I just feel that to go after someone’s character to justify his death, I’m not pleased with that. I’m not saying that he was a perfect person. He made mistakes.

She added: “And he had a disease that he was working hard to fight against and it’s a tough disease to fight.”

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