An Ohio coroner’s office ruled this week that Andre Hill, who was fatally shot by a former Columbus police officer, died of multiple gunshot wounds and that his manner of death was homicide.
Hill was shot once in the chest and three times in the right leg, according to Dr. Elaine Amoresano, the forensic pathologist who performed the autopsy.
Adam Coy, the former officer, shot and killed Hill, a 47-year-old Black man, on December 22 within seconds of their encounter. Hill was unarmed and walking toward Coy holding an illuminated cell phone in his left hand, body camera footage shows.
Coy was indicted in February on charges of murder in the commission of a felony, felonious assault and two counts of dereliction of duty – one based on Coy’s failure to use his body camera and one “based on his failure to inform his fellow officer that he felt Andre Hill presented a danger,” said Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost.
The autopsy comes as the United States is still reckoning with its history and current systemic issues of race. The country is coming off of a year of protests calling for police reform after the deaths of Black people such as George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Rayshard Brooks at the hands of law enforcement.
The officer was fired in December
Coy responded to a call around 1:30 a.m. December 22 to reports of a man who had been sitting in his SUV for an extended period, repeatedly turning his engine on and off.
Coy started shooting within a few seconds of seeing Hill and turned his camera on after the shooting. However, the camera’s look-back feature captured 60 seconds of video, with no audio, prior to Coy turning it on.
The body camera footage appears to show Coy and Hill walking toward one another. It’s not clear whether Hill or Coy said anything during their brief interaction.
In the first few seconds of Coy’s body camera video in which audio is available, Coy ordered Hill to get his hands out to the side, ordered him to get on his stomach and warned an officer to not get close because one of Hill’s arms is under the car where he collapsed.
About 37 seconds after the shooting, Coy asked whether a medic was coming.
A report prepared by the Columbus police chief after the shooting said an officer who responded with Coy said she heard Coy say he saw a gun, and that Coy yelled, “There’s a gun in his other hand, there’s a gun in his other hand!”
As a result of the shooting, Coy was fired in December. Columbus Police Chief Thomas Quinlan, who stepped down in January, said in a statement in December the evidence against Coy provided “solid rationale” for termination.