SF Medical Examiner’s Report is a Desperate Dud


The San Francisco Medical Examiner has ruled the death of Alejandro (Alex) Nieto as a homicide, not death by natural causes, not death by accident, not death by suicide. This is a death by homicide. Unfortunately, because much of their report seems to be an intentional sabotage to our justice cause, we hereby emphatically re-request the federal department of justice to thoroughly investigate this homicide. San Francisco and their apparatus cannot be trusted.


While the medical examiner report contains much information that is irrelevant to Alex’s death, it does state that he had up to fourteen wounds in both his head and body, from the front and back; the trajectory of those wounds were both downward and upward, which seems to indicate he was shot while lying on the ground. What justification can be used to fire up to fifteen rounds into someone who is lying on the ground?

The report also indicates that most of the bullets hit Alex in the front of the body; both head wounds were to the face. But there were at least two gunshot wounds in his back. Eyewitness reports indicate that two officers approached him from behind. What kind of threat does a man facing away from officers present?


During a meeting with the Nietos and their attorney on Friday, May 16, District Attorney Gascon promised that when the autopsy report would be completed, he would personally notify us in advance. He did not. In fact, the family received a summary report, while the media received the full report. While we could only address a summary report, the media reacted to a full biased report that we did not have access to comment on at the time.

To add insult to injury, the Medical Examiner’s Office called the Nieto Family to tell them they could request the full report for $38.

This biased report seems to be an attempt to shock us, but the community stands strong and ready.


Let us review the uncontested facts of this case:

On Friday, March 21st, 2014, at the time police encountered Alex Nieto, they knew absolutely nothing about his history. At this present time, six months later, we have no evidence that any 911 call, witness statement, or radio dispatch notified police officers before they encountered Alex that he was in any way acting aggressively or erratically. In fact, information provided by police and eyewitnesses consistently report him as NOT a threat.

Facts: Alex Nieto was a hard-working, outstanding college student, a volunteer at the Youth Guidance Center Juvenile Hall, a loving son, and positive community activist. This is not the portrait of someone who is so ill that they cannot perform productively in society. How could he be so dysfunctional yet at the same time perform so many positive duties? A security guard, Alex Nieto was scheduled for work in less than two hours when the police killed him.

When one can’t deal with facts, one attempts to slander the victim.

Learn more about Alex’s Story!


There is no reason or authority for the Medical Examiner to act as a police detective investigating any possible rationale for anything that happened on Bernal Heights on Friday, March 21. Their job is simply to conduct an examination of the body and notify the public of the medical examination concerning the cause of death. The San Francisco Medical Examiner is not a detective agency; if they were, then they should also be investigating the background and disciplinary records of the police officers who killed Alex Nieto, yet we still do not even have those officers’ names. The San Francisco Medical Examiner is supposed to be unbiased and transparent in safeguarding the public good, yet here they are obviously attempting to besmirch the character of Alex Nieto, even though that is not their job.


The report also claims that Alex brandished his taser, yet it is not the medical examiner’s job to make any determinations on possible brandishing of tasers. In an unbiased manner, they are simply supposed to determine cause of death. Their statement about brandishing obviously shows that they are using the police account as fact, which is not part of the medical examiner’s job.

But we should question why the medical examiner used the term “brandishing.” Who gave the medical examiner that language? It is critically important to understand that the Medical Examiner chose to pander to SFPD by including a CONTESTED version of events into their report. Even this language shows the need for further evidence. At the townhall meeting at Leonard Flynn Elementary School on Tuesday, March 25, 2014, the Chief of Police Greg Suhr consistently and repeatedly stated that Alex Nieto had “pointed” the taser at officers. Brandishing and pointing are not the same action. There is inconsistency in this vital detail that is unraveling the competing police accounts.

Consider that this narrative of the taser firing is a different story than that told at the Town Hall meeting. SFPD are changing their story; trying to increase the perception of threat when there was none. If the taser had been fired, this would have been the first story told. SFPD and the City are digging themselves deeper into the hole of their fabricated story.

Remember, eyewitnesses consistently say Alex was never a threat, never raised his taser, nor moved to touch his taser. The Medical Examiner’s is deliberately and shamelessly facilitating SFPD’s cover up; showing that besides its general incompetence, the M.E. cannot be trusted as an independent examiner.

The Medical Examiner’s report also states the taser was discharged. Again, this is a contested fact in a lawsuit which explains that witnesses confirm that Alex never touched his taser. There is absolutely no reason why police narrative of events should even be in the AUTOPSY report. This is a violation of the public trust.

  • If the taser were discharged while Alex was lying down, then Alex may have discharged it in self-defense of his life.
  • If the taser was discharged, was it due to one of the fifteen bullets that attacked Alex Nieto?
  • AND MOST IMPORTANTLY, did police discharge the taser to cover up the fact that Alex never had a taser in his hand?
  • Even if the taser had been discharged, which we have no proof that it was discharged by Alex, this would indicate that if Alex was upright, officers would or should have immediately known that Alex did not discharge a firearm, as the sound of a taser being discharged is not the blast of a pistol, and, of course, no bullet would have ejected from the taser. Yet the police continued to fire into Alex while he was lying down.

Note again that the witness(es) contradict any possibility of Alex brandishing, pointing, or discharging any taser, as they state that Alex never pointed a taser nor was he warned by the police before the police shot him multiple times.


Alex’s past mental well-being is irrelevant to the issue of whether the police are liable or criminally accountable for his homicide. An isolated incident, years back, in which Alex needed medical attention in no manner justifies an unlawful police murder. In fact, it is unrelated to March 21st, 2014.

Any smear tactics cannot contradict or explain witness statements concerning this police shooting. Officers did not know who Alex was or anything about any mental illness. No evidence whatsoever has been brought forth that police knew anything about Alex’s history prior to encountering him, so any issues that Alex may have had in 2011, three full years before his killing, are completely irrelevant and should not have equated to a death sentence without due process at the hands of the police.

We also question why police officers, who should be protecting and serving communities, continue to stigmatize and criminalize mental illness. Mental illness is not a crime. Mental illness is a recoverable condition.


The medical examiner’s job is to examine the decedent’s body, not his medical history. According to experienced attorneys in the field, the type of report that the medical examiner has issued in this case is a grotesque, unprecedented type of report that goes well beyond the scope of the medical examiner’s duties. Furthermore, we ask these questions: why did the medical examiner even requisition Alex’s medical history when they knew exactly how he had been killed—by gunshot wounds? How would the medical examiner have known that Alex had medical records at San Francisco General Hospital? Was it that the San Francisco Police Department, after killing a completely innocent man and then through their desperate attempt to slander Alex’s name by intimidating and interrogating various people, told the medical examiner to dig into Alex’s specific confidential medical records? In less than one business day after the killing, who gave the medical examiner permission to access Alex Nieto’s medical records, which are confidential private information that must be subpoenaed by an authorized agent? Who authorized the medical examiner to use the language that was used to summarize only certain information about Alex Nieto’s confidential medical records? The medical examiner has absolutely no expertise to perform a psychological profile or police detective evaluation concerning Alex Nieto.


The San Francisco Medical Examiner has violated the public trust.

The San Francisco city apparatus continues to push forward slanderous information to negatively assassinate Alex’s character, when the focus should remain on the killing of an innocent man. Highest level San Francisco officials seem to be embracing this ridiculous report in order to cover up their negligence and possible criminality. A desperate dud, this report is their attempt to counter our positive and effective community efforts.

When looked at with critical and reasonable eyes, this medical examiner’s report is proof that our efforts are forcing them into desperation.

Continue to question. Continue to spread the word. Continue the good fight.

Continue Amor and Justice for Alex Nieto!

UPDATE: Read Medical Examiner’s Report Ruling Homicide as Cause of Death

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