DEVASTATING: In testimony not like any other, world’s renowned pulmonologist Martin Tobin concludes George Floyd died of “low level of oxygen” caused by “knee on the neck” and not “drug”

Dr. Martin Tobin, a pulmonologist, who wrote a 1500-page book described by the Lancet as ‘the bible of mechanical ventilation’ testified on Thursday in the trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin for the alleged murder of George Floyd on May 25, 2020.

Floyd and Chauvin with knee on the neck 

The Irishman, with an experience spanning 46 years, is one of the leading pulmonologists in the world who has been described by the American Thoric Society as a “supreme scholar.”

He currently works at Loyola University Medical Center in Chicago, Illinois. From Freshford in Co. Kilkenny, Dr. Tobin studied at Trinity College and UCD before heading to the United Kingdom and the United States.

Dr. Tobin said “Mr. Floyd died from a low level of oxygen caused by shallow breathing.” This led to a brain damage and caused the heart to stop.

With compelling evidence based on the video, Floyd’s movement, breathing and the actions of Derek Chauvin, Dr. Tobin was able to conclude that George Floyd stopped breathing after just five minutes and some seconds. He said Floyd suffered brain injury leading to his death.


Dooming the defense’s argument that Floyd died as a result of drug in his system, he said based on Floyd’s breathing on the video, fentanyl did not play any role in his death. He said Floyd had a breathing rate of 22 breaths per minute, explaining that a normal human has minimum breathing rate of 17 breaths per minute plus or minus 5 breaths (12 to 22 breaths per minute).


With fentanyl, his breathing would have dropped by 40 percent and come down to around 10 breaths per minute. But his was at 22 breaths per minute twice what it could have been with fentanyl. After the officers realized he had no pulse, he said the knee remained on the neck for 2 minutes and 44 seconds.

Chief White House Correspondent for

Simon Ateba is Chief White House Correspondent for Today News Africa. Simon covers President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, the U.S. government, the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions in Washington D.C. and New York City.

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