DeKalb Co. releases official autopsy report for protester shot by troopers at APD training facility

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — The DeKalb County Medical Examiner’s Office has released the official autopsy report for APD training facility protester Manuel “Tortuguita” Teran.

Teran was shot and killed in January during a raid on the forest at the planned Atlanta Public Safety Training Center site. Officials say Teran shot a state trooper as they were clearing the forest, causing them to return fire.

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The 31-page report from DeKalb County Medical Examiner’s Office said Teran had at least 57 gunshot wounds. It does not say how many actual shots were fired nor did it determine the position that Teran was in.

“Since most shootings involving multiple gunshots are dynamic events attempts to place the decedent in any particular position at a specific point in time is fraught with potential inaccuracies. There are too many variables with respect to movement of the decedent and the shooters to draw definitive conclusions concerning Mr. Teran’s body position,” according to the report.

The report states that gunshot wounds were from an “indeterminate range.” It details each gunshot wound and found that “gunpowder residue are not associated” with the wounds. It also stated “gunpowder residue is not seen on the hands.”

However, the report states that a gunshot residue kit was performed. The results of that test have not been released.

The GBI previously said that a firearm purchased by Teran has been tied to the bullet that wounded a trooper and that he purchased the gun in 2020.

Teran’s family spoke out in a press release Wednesday evening after the official autopsy was released.

“We are devastated to learn that our child, our sweet Manny, was mercilessly gunned down by police and suffered 57 bullet wounds all over their body,” said Manuel Paez Teran’s mother, Belkis Teran.


Another autopsy report, obtained by Channel 2 Action News, performed at a Griffin funeral home in January details the second autopsy performed on Teran’s body.

This autopsy report concludes that Teran’s wounds had no gunpowder residue on his wounds. It notes that any residue could have been washed away during the first autopsy, but that is “very unlikely.”

However, this does not indicate whether or not Teran fired a weapon. The second autopsy report says that Teran was shot several times, including in the head, chest, legs and hands.

At some point during the shooting, the report said Teran raised both hands. It is unclear if shots had already been fired at that point.

“It is impossible to determine if the decedent had been holding a firearm, or not holding a firearm, either before he was shot or while he was being shot the multiple times,” the report reads.

Authorities have said that because Georgia State Patrol troopers do not wear body cameras, there is no video footage capturing the shooting. Atlanta police have released body camera footage of surrounding areas in which the shooting can be heard, but not seen.

In the months leading up to and after Teran’s death, dozens of other protesters have been arrested and charged with domestic terrorism after violent attacks at the facility and in the streets of downtown Atlanta.

Correction: A previous version of this story noted there was no gunpowder residue on Teran’s hands, but the report states there was no gunpowder residue in Teran’s wounds.