Former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick continues to be a monumental force when it comes to education and civil rights issues concerning Black Americans. According to Newsweek, Kaepernick is launching a program called the Autopsy Initiative. It’s a service that will provide families a second-free autopsy with full access to the report’s findings.
Kaepernick’s Know Your Rights campaign will collaborate with a panel of board-certified forensic pathologists who perform autopsies, disclose preliminary findings and issue final reports to requesting families. The initiative itself defines police-related deaths as “those that occur “when an individual is harmed by police officers while using deadly force, which results in the individual’s death.”
Anyone with a “close relationship” with the victim, like relatives, partners, friends, or lawyers, can request an autopsy for someone they know who died in police custody. They would have to fill out an online form with information about who died, when, where, and other general information about why they requested a second autopsy.
Kaepernick himself offered a few words about his new initiative.
“We know that the prison industrial complex, which includes police and policing, strives to protect and serve its interests at all costs,” Kaepernick said in a statement sent to Newsweek. “The Autopsy Initiative is one important step toward ensuring that family members have access to accurate and forensically verifiable information about the cause of death of their loved one in their time of need.”
Pathology coordinator Dr. Cyril Wecht also showed excitement:
“I am extremely enthusiastic about this truly unique program,” said Dr. Cyril Wecht, one of the pathologists on the initiative’s panel. “The opportunity to have unbiased second autopsies performed by independent, experienced forensic pathologists in police-related deaths will provide victims’ families with knowledge that the true facts of any such case have been thoroughly analyzed and prepared for appropriate utilization whenever deemed necessary.”