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Autopsy: Tulsa police shooting victim had PCP in his system when he died

Autopsy: Tulsa police victim had PCP in system when he died

Terence Crutcher, the 40-year-old unarmed Oklahoma man fatally shot by a Tulsa police officer after his car broke down on a city street on Sept. 16, had the hallucinogenic drug PCP in his system when he died, a medical examiner said Tuesday. The medical examiner ruled that Crutcher had "acute phencyclidine intoxication" when he died. According to an eight-page report, Crutcher suffered a "penetrating gunshot wound of chest" and noted that both of his lungs were pierced and that he had four broken ribs. That report, a defense attorney for Police Officer Betty Jo Shelby said, provides an early snapshot of evidence that will exonerate her.

It will be clear in my mind as the case unfolds that the officer was justified in her use of force.

Shannon McMurray, defense attorney for Police Officer Betty Jo Shelby

Shelby was charged with first-degree manslaughter after Crutcher's death, with a prosecutor saying she reacted unreasonably when he disobeyed her commands. Medical literature says PCP, also known as “angel dust,” can induce euphoria and feelings of omnipotence as well as agitation, mania and depression. Videos from a police helicopter and a dashboard camera showed Crutcher walking away from Shelby on a north Tulsa street with his arms in the air, but the footage does not offer a clear view of when Shelby fired the single shot.

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Phencyclidine

Phencyclidine(PCP), also known as angel dust and Sernyl among others, is a dissociative drug. PCP was brought to market in the 1950s as an anesthetic pharmaceutical drug but was taken off the market in 1965 due to the high prevalence of dissociative hallucinogenic side effects.

Shooting of Terence Crutcher

On September 16, 2016, Terence Crutcher, a 40-year-old African-American man, was fatally shot by white police officer Betty Shelby in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He was unarmed during the encounter, in which he was standing near his vehicle in the middle of a street.The shooting led to protests in Tulsa.