Autopsy report shows THC was in Tyre Nichols system; experts say that’s a common finding

Published: May. 5, 2023 at 7:30 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Fatal blows to Tyre Nichols ultimately led to his death, that’s according to an autopsy report that was released Thursday.

The medical examiner ruled the 29-year-old’s death a homicide, but that’s not all we learned.

Marijuana and alcohol were also found in his system.

Toxicology results showing THC or marijuana at levels retired Arkansas medical examiner Dr. Frank Peretti says is similar to someone who smoked marijuana recently.

However, Peretti and Memphis defense attorney Michael Working says that’s a common finding in autopsy reports.

“It’s very common and I would say more than 90% of the cases the person who is the subject of the autopsy does have some level of drugs in their system,” said Working.

Working and Perretti says the THC levels were moderate, not excessive.

Alcohol was also found in Nichols’ system, but it was well within legal limits.

The alcohol in his system was about half the limit for operating a vehicle.

The police officers involved in Nichols’ traffic stop said Nichols appeared high or on drugs.

Nichols’ mother was also told he was arrested for DUI.

“I think defense attorneys may try to argue that the combination of those drugs and alcohol may have affected Mr. Nichol’s ability to comprehend and comply,” said Working, " and of course, the state will argue that all kind of conflicting demands on Mr. Nichols so it would be normal for anyone to be puzzled by what was happening or how to respond.”

Working says unlike drugs like Methamphetamine,  Marijuana also rarely makes people violent.

Working says at the end of the day, the body cam footage will tell the story to any potential jury.

" The video is going to speak louder than any autopsy as it does in any murder case,” said Working.

Nichols family attorney Ben Crump released a statement saying these autopsy results prove the brutal beating of Nichols.

The five former officers indicted for second degree murder are expected in court on June 5.

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