NewsIberia Parish


Family releases autopsy report on Quawan Charles

quawan charles_redbackground.jpg
Posted at 9:59 AM, Feb 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-08 11:31:02-05

Attorneys for the family of Quawan Charles have released an autopsy report conducted on the teen's body.

The report, prepared by Louisiana Forensic Center, says the teen's cause of death was drowning. The manner of death is "undetermined." It lists as a witness to the autopsy the Iberia Parish Sheriff's detective who is the lead investigator on the case.

The report includes some information not previously released. It states that Charles' body was naked when it was found, and that he had been captured alone on surveillance video near where his body was found. It also states that Charles was spotted "crawling in culverts" near a school, and that he became combative and threatened to kill himself after smoking drugs, possibly marijuana or mushrooms.

The doctor who prepared the report finds that "it is unknown why or how" Charles drowned.

"The uncertainties about whether this drowning represents an accidental, suicidal or homicidal death makes an undetermined manner of death most appropriate likely," the report states.

The positive toxicology report is noted, and the behavior caught on video and related by witnesses indicates possible "psychosis," he writes. Although the levels of marijuana and alcohol found were low, it's possible the substances had metabolized as the body was found several days after he disappeared, the doctor writes.

"There are no antemortem injuries to suggest a struggle, although it cannot be entirely ruled out," the report states. "In addition, alleged video evidence suggests he was likely alone, making a struggle leading to a homicidal drowning unlikely."

The toxicology was positive for THC and metabolites, and for alcohol. THC is the active substance in marijuana.

The report indicates there were no "acute antemortem injuries" found on the body; antemortem refers to the time before death. There were postmortem injuries consistent with animal and/or insect activity on the face, the report states.

The eyes were free of petechiae, which are dots that form when tiny blood vessels burst. It can be an indication of strangulation. His hyoid bone also was intact; a broken one also can be an indication of strangulation.

The report indicates there was no indication of injury to his neck or any other area of his body; there were no bruises, abrasions or lacerations. His nose wasn't broken. There was muddy water in his nose.

The attorneys for his family members issued a statement again accusing a woman of homicide and demanding that she be arrested for her "role" in Charles' death.

It is the position of the family that the woman is the person who picked up Charles the day he disappeared; surveillance video near his father's home captured him leaving with someone.

The attorneys say in today's statement that "there has long been enough evidence" to arrest the woman, and that the "only rational conclusion" is that there is foul play at work.

The family and their attorneys also have been critical of law enforcement in the case, both of what they believe was a lack of urgency when Charles was reported missing, and what they believe is a failure to arrest the woman they say is involved.

To read more about what the family and their representatives have to say, click here and here.