SAN FRANCISCO -- An autopsy released today shows Mario Woods, who died in a deadly confrontation with San Francisco police in December, suffered 20 gunshot wounds.
Many of those wounds were to the 26-year-old's back, buttocks and back of the head. Marijuana, methamphetamine and antidepressants appeared in Woods' system too, according to the post-mortem by the city's medical examiner.
"The important issue is the location of the gunshots," said Woods family attorney John Burris. "Shooting someone in the back like that is scandalous."
It was no surprise the examiner ruled the gunshots to be the cause of death. But it's unclear exactly how many times Woods was shot because some bullets may have caused multiple wounds. It was unclear how many were exit and entry wounds, the San Francisco Examiner reported.
Woods' death has sparked protests here, and even gained national attention during the Super Bowl halftime performance, when Beyonce's dancers held signs of support for Woods.
On Dec 2., five officers opened fire on Woods, a suspect in an earlier stabbing, on a street in the Bayview neighborhood after he ignored demands to drop a knife. Police Chief Greg Suhr claims that cops shot Woods after he made a threatening move with the blade. Critics contend that witnesses' videos appear to show he posed no direct threat to the officers.
Warning: This video contains violent images.
The drugs present in Woods' system show that he was impaired at the time of the shooting, so police should have used techniques for dealing with unstable people, Burris said.
Calls to the San Francisco police were not immediately returned.
The San Francisco police released a statement to KGO-TV contending that the autopsy fit with their version of events.
"The newly released information in the autopsy report appears to corroborate facts gathered by investigators in the aftermath of this tragic incident. The department is committed to a thorough review of the shooting and this report will be an important component of all three ongoing independent investigations," the statement said.
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