CORONER’s Report

Seven months after Soleiman’s death, a 56-page coroner’s report was released that described the final moments of Soli’s life. 

In the hours before his death, Soleiman had refused to leave the shower, tossing shampoo bottles and spraying water at the guards who tried to remove him. While Soli was being escorted from the shower to his cell, he was struck by one of the guards.

Soleiman was twice pepper-sprayed directly in the face and pushed into his cell, where the abuse continued out of view of security cameras.

A few minutes later, a “code blue” was issued, and several more guards entered the cell. They held down Soleiman’s limbs, placed a spit hood over his head, and held his body down with leg irons. Shortly after, the officers cuffed his hands behind his back.

Five to ten minutes after this second shift of guards had arrived, Soli was unresponsive and no longer breathing. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The coroner’s report found more than 50 cuts, bruises and other “obvious” signs of injury all over Soleiman’s body. This included several bruises to the upper and lower extremities, shoulders, head, neck, back, abrasions throughout the body, and ligature marks around the ankles and wrists.

None of these injuries were related to lifesaving measures, but all were the result of “blunt impact trauma.” Indeed, the report stated that “many of the injuries would be in keeping with the story of attempts to restrain this man.” However, none of these injuries were considered by the coroner as a “sufficient” explanation for Soleiman’s death, leaving the cause of death “unascertained.”

Genetic conditions and disease were not determined to be factors in Soli’s death, and the report concluded that the levels of antipsychotic medication found in his system were not high enough to have contributed to his death. However, the report could not rule out the possibility that Soli had been asphyxiated by the spit hood.

About the Movement

Justice for Soli was founded by Soleiman’s eldest brother, Yusuf Faqiri, only one or two days after his brother’s murder in December 2016. In early 2017, the McMaster Muslims for Peace and Justice became the first organization to completely throw its support behind Justice for Soli, transforming what was once a small group of friends and family into a larger social justice movement with hundreds of supporters. Today, over 100 organizations are affiliated with Justice for Soli, supporting the movement in its fight for justice, transparency and accountability.