On September 14, Columbus Division of Police officer Bryan Mason shot and killed 13-year-old Tyre King in an alley. The department alleges that when officers pursued King and two other kids who fit the description of armed robbery suspects, the boy pulled what they thought was a gun, but turned out to be a toy, from his waistband.
The Franklin County Coroner’s Office has completed its autopsy on his body, but The Guardian reports that the office will not release the results for at least six weeks, pending a toxicology report. Now, an independently conducted autopsy shows that King was likely running away from officers when he was shot.
King’s family hired Wayne County, Michigan, medical examiner Francisco J. Diaz to examine his body on Sunday (September 18). His findings are detailed in a statement posted on the family attorney’s website yesterday (September 19):
Dr. Diaz determined that Tyre King suffered three gunshot wounds with entrance paths on the left side of his body, any of which could be determined to have been the cause of death. Tyre suffered a gunshot wound of entrance on the left temple that passed left to right and slightly downward and exited through the right temple. The entrance wound was above the left ear and the exit wound was in front of the right ear. Tyre also suffered a gunshot wound to the left collarbone area. Lastly, he suffered a gunshot wound to the left flank. There is an exit wound on the right flank.
Dr. Diaz notes: “Based on the location and the direction of the wound paths it is more likely than not that Tyre King was in the process of running away from the shooter or shooters when he suffered all three gunshot wounds.” Dr. Diaz describes Tyre as a “small-framed adolescent boy, standing 5’0” and weighing less than 100 lbs.”
In the statement, the King’s family asks the public to “withhold final judgment until all the facts are known and vetted,” and reiterated its concern that the investigation is being conducted internally: “The family continues to request a full, thorough and independent investigation by an outside law enforcement agency and are requesting that the Columbus Police Department and the Franklin County Prosecutor’s Office remove themselves from any involvement in the investigation.”