Wednesday afternoon it was announced that three former Minneapolis police officers will be criminally charged in connection with the death of George Floyd.
In addition, Derek Chauvin, the former officer who initially was charged with 3rd-degree murder in the case will now be charged with second-degree murder.
Details of the charges against the other three former officers were not readily available at the time of press, but rumors are that the trio will be charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder.
The ex-officers assisted arresting Floyd on Memorial Day under suspicion of passing a counterfeit $20 bill.
All four officers: Tou Thao, J. Alexander Keueng, Thomas Lane and Derek Chauvin were terminated last week.
Chauvin, who is white, was arrested on Friday and charged with second-degree manslaughter and third-degree murder after video footage showed him kneeling on Floyd’s neck for eight minutes and 46 seconds as he cried out that he could not breathe.
Videos show that Chauvin kept his knee on Floyd’s neck nearly three minutes after he became unresponsive.
Floyd’s death has sparked protests across the world against police brutality with both demonstrators and Floyd’s family calling for charges to be brought against the other three officers. The family of Floyd is also demanding Chauvin be charged with first-degree murder.
There were two separate autopsies performed on Floyd. One by Hennepin County’s Medical Examiner and the other commissioned by Floyd’s family. Both found Floyd’s death was a homicide but differed in determinations of causes. Hennepin’s M.E.cited “cardiopulmonary arrest” complicated by being subdued with restraint and neck compression as well as underlying health conditions contributing to his death. The independent autopsy found that Floyd died from asphyxiation caused by pressure on his neck and back. Dr. Michael Baden, a former chief M.E. for New York City and pathologist stated that Floyd had no underlying health issues causing or contributing to his death.
In the criminal complaint against Chauvin, Kueng held Floyd’s back and Lane held his legs. Kueng checked for a pulse at one point and stated that “he could not find one”. The other officers stayed in their positions for an additional two minutes.
Floyd told the officers repeatedly that he “could not breathe”, he cried out for his deceased mother and begged for his life.
Videos show bystanders calling for the officers to get off of him, but they did not move.
When interviewed earlier today, Benjamin Crump, the family’s attorney, said that “Floyd cried out for anyone who would listen.”
“It seemed like the people on the street were listening. The people who refused to listen were the people who were supposed to listen.”
This is a breaking story. Street Elements will keep you informed as more details are released.