SACRAMENTO — The independent autopsy report on Stephon Clark’s death was released Friday morning by civil rights and personal injury attorney Ben Crump and famed pathologist Dr. Bennet Omalu.
Dr. Omalu, whose study of a degenerative brain condition in football players prompted the NFL to adopt new safety rules designed to prevent concussions, also determined Clark took up to 10 minutes to die.
Police officers, concerned Clark could be alive and armed, waited about five minutes to approach him after the shooting in his grandmother’s backyard on March 18. Clark was not armed; police apparently mistook a cellphone in his hand for a gun.
His death has gained national attention as community leaders and loved ones continue to demand the officers involved be held accountable for 22-year-old Clark’s death.
Based on Dr. Omalu’s autopsy report, Clark was struck by eight bullets hitting him in the back or side. Dr. Omalu says his findings clearly refute the information from the Sacramento Police Department that says Clark was moving towards officers when they shot at him.
Clark received one bullet to the back of his neck, one to his left side towards his back, a cluster of six bullets entered into his back on the right side and one to his left thigh on the front.
“These findings from the independent autopsy contradict the police narrative that we’ve been told,” explained Crump. “From the time this investigation began, statements provided by the Sacramento Police Department have proven to be self-serving, untrustworthy, and unreliable.”
During the press conference, Dr. Omalu explained that all of the wounds could’ve been fatal.
“Death took about three to ten minutes; [Clark’s] death was not instantaneous,” Dr. Omalu explained.
Crump expects the police to directly contradict Dr. Omalu’s findings.
At this time, the Sacramento County Coroner’s Office says they are still waiting on toxicology reports and will not be releasing their autopsy report to the public until the decision is made on charges for the officers.
If no charges are filed, they say it will be released right away.
If the charges are filed against the officers, their results will be released once the trial is completed.
The Sacramento Police Department responded to the results with the following:
Here is our response to the press conference today:
The Sacramento Police Department has not been provided with the official report from the Sacramento County Coroner’s office in the case of Stephan Clark. The Sacramento County Coroner’s Office conducts an independent death investigation that is separate from the joint investigation being conducted by our agency and the California Department of Justice.
Further comment by the Sacramento Police Department prior to the release of the Coroner’s report along with the official review by the Sacramento County District Attorney and the California Department of Justice would be inappropriate at this time. We acknowledge the importance of this case to all in our community and we are committed to a thorough and comprehensive investigation.
-Sacramento Police Department Media Unit
This is a developing story. Stay with FOX40 for updates.