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OMI: Both Arm And Back Wounds Contributed To Boyd’s Death

Associated Press
An image from the video of the March 16, 2014 shooting.

For most people who’ve seen the footage of Albuquerque Police shooting James Boyd, the scene ends when the shots have been fired. But testimony Monday, Sept. 26, in the trial of former officers Keith Sandy and Dominique Perez looked at the physical impact of those bullets and what happened next. 

Medical Investigator Sam Andrews oversaw the autopsy and said doctors at University of New Mexico Hospital fought for seven hours to save Boyd’s life. They also amputated one of his arms that had been shattered by a bullet.

Andrews testified that blood loss could have caused Boyd’s death, and he explained how that happens. "If the person doesn’t get to [the] hospital immediately, then even though they’re able to replace some of that blood loss, then the body is still starting to shut down, the organs and tissue are starting to die still, and they continue to do so," he said.

The day in court included graphic photos of Boyd’s clothes and injuries.   

One of Perez’ bullets hit Boyd’s back. According to testimony, Sandy’s three shots struck Boyd’s arms. Sandy’s defense attorney pressed the medical investigator about whether those arm wounds that were caused by his client actually led to Boyd’s death. Andrews testified that a combination of the back and arm injuries contributed. 

Marisa Demarco began a career in radio at KUNM News in late 2013 and covered public health for much of her time at the station. During the pandemic, she is also the executive producer for Your NM Government and No More Normal, shows focused on the varied impacts of COVID-19 and community response, as well as racial and social justice. She joined Source New Mexico as editor-in-chief in 2021.
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