HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » Want police reform? We ne...

Tue Jun 2, 2020, 05:57 PM

Want police reform? We need independent medical examiners and coroners.

Justin Feldman is an assistant professor of epidemiology at the New York University School of Medicine.

Floyd’s death is hardly the only case in which medical examiners have produced baffling findings after conducting autopsies of people who died while in police custody. This case is more proof that if we want police accountability, we need to make sure medical examiners can issue honest, independent reports on how people such as Floyd died.

If discrepancies between what seem like obvious causes of death and what actually shows up in autopsy reports or on death certificates seem shocking, they aren’t uncommon. I know, because I worked with a group of other epidemiologists to match police killings reported in the media to death certificate summaries we obtained from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (Under the privacy agreement governing the release of those summaries, we cannot discuss individual cases in detail.) We found that coroners and medical examiners throughout the United States routinely report findings that minimize the responsibility of police.

Our study identified 71 people who died in police custody after they had been subject to a Taser shock, chokehold or other form of restraint; after being transported in a police vehicle; or after being denied water while in detention. Medical examiners and coroners determined that only 24 of those people lost their lives because force was applied to them. In some of these cases, investigators correctly assigned a diagnostic code specific to police-related injury. But in others, the coroners and medical examiners used diagnostic codes meant to indicate a homicide between civilians. Even if these discrepancies were errors rather than deceptions, the result was that fewer police-involved deaths showed up in mortality data.

And a majority of these deaths — 47 of the 71 — were attributed to causes such as accidental injury, respiratory disease or mental illness, rather than to the actions of police officers. In some cases, the cause of death was reported as “undetermined.” While I did not have access to the full medical-examiner reports for these deaths in custody, the results strongly suggest that the role of police actions in the deaths were also minimized.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2020/06/02/want-police-reform-we-need-independent-medical-examiners-coroners/

6 replies, 528 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 6 replies Author Time Post
Reply Want police reform? We need independent medical examiners and coroners. (Original post)
octoberlib Jun 2020 OP
Bev54 Jun 2020 #1
Freelancer Jun 2020 #2
WhiskeyGrinder Jun 2020 #3
Freelancer Jun 2020 #5
WhiskeyGrinder Jun 2020 #6
JonLP24 Jun 2020 #4

Response to octoberlib (Original post)

Tue Jun 2, 2020, 06:06 PM

1. Yes and.....

every cop needs to have their social media monitored for racism and fired when they have more than one use of force legitimate complaints. Maybe they need to have better screening in the hiring stage. My niece's husband applied for a city police position and he had to go through a series of psychological evaluations over weeks and in the end they said he did not have enough compassion to be a police officer. He could take some courses and try again, but he went onto a different career which was probably good. This was in Canada though but I do not understand why it is not everywhere. There will still be some bad apples that slip through but no doubt a lot less.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to octoberlib (Original post)


Response to Freelancer (Reply #2)

Tue Jun 2, 2020, 06:32 PM

3. "How do you think this is going to turn out for you?"

Generally, they find out it turns out pretty well.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to WhiskeyGrinder (Reply #3)


Response to Freelancer (Reply #5)

Tue Jun 2, 2020, 07:11 PM

6. Among homicides reportedly caused by police, less than 2% go to trial.

Oh, and fuck all those who make posting even simple thoughts a life-suck.

Yep. That would be you.
Not sure what you're getting at here. You did indeed have a simple thought, that the 17-year-old Black girl filming George Floyd's death saying "How do you think this will end for you?" would have...what, gotten the cop that looked *right into the camera with his hands in his pockets while grinding his knee into a man's neck* to rethink his actions? FOH. People need to keep themselves safe around cops, and the courage and bravery she showed to get the footage is unimpeachable.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to octoberlib (Original post)

Tue Jun 2, 2020, 06:37 PM

4. K&R

Frontline did an eye opening investigation of the coroner system. It seems medical examiners aren't much better in some instances.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread