“Cop City” protester killed by officers had 57 gunshot wounds, autopsy finds
A protester fatally shot by officers in January at the site of a controversial law enforcement training site in Atlanta, Georgia, known as “Cop City” had at least 57 gunshot wounds, according to an autopsy obtained Wednesday by CBS News.
The autopsy, conducted by the Dekalb County Medical Examiner, found that Manuel Paez Teran sustained gunshot wounds to his entire body, including his head, torso, hands and legs.
The medical examiner noted that the autopsy could not determine Teran’s “body position” at the time of the shooting because of “too many variables with respect to movement of the decedent and the shooters.”
“Since most shootings involving multiple gunshots are dynamic events attempts to place the decedent in any particular position at a specific point in time is fraught with potential inaccuracies,” the autopsy stated.
The Teran family last month released the results of an independent autopsy it commissioned which claimed that Teran had his hands up and was sitting cross-legged at the time of the shooting.
Teran, an environmental activist, was shot and killed Jan. 18 during a protest at the site of the proposed Atlanta Public Safety Training Center. A Georgia state trooper was also shot and wounded during the incident.
State police have alleged that Teran was armed and shot and wounded the trooper. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) previously released a photo of the gun it alleges Teran was carrying at the time of the shooting. GBI said that forensic analysis matched the round which wounded the trooper to that gun, a Smith & Wesson Shield 9mm which was legally purchased by Teran in 2020.
The autopsy found that no “soot, stippling, searing” or “gunpower residue” were found on Teran’s clothes or “around any of the gunshot wounds.”
GBI has said there was no officer body camera footage of the shooting.
In a statement released Wednesday night, the Teran family said that “while the autopsy report provides additional information, it does not bring the family closer to the answers they seek.”
“Cop City” has been the site of ongoing protests over the past several months which have resulted in dozens of arrests.
— Cara Tabachnick contributed to this report.