All sacked cops involved in George Floyd case face charges
After over a week of intense protests in the United States against the death of a Black man in police custody, new charges have been introduced against all four sacked police officers involved. George Floyd (46) had died on May 25 after a white cop, Derek Chauvin (44), knelt on his neck for several minutes in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Here are more details.
What are the new charges?
Arrested on Friday, Chauvin was previously charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. He has now been slapped with a second-degree murder charge. The other three former officers—Thomas Lane, Tou Thao, and J Alexander Kueng—have been charged with aiding and abetting both second-degree murder and manslaughter. All four have already been fired from the police department.
What is the punishment for these charges?
A second-degree charge under Minnesota law is defined as unintentionally causing another person's death in the commission of a felony offense. The charge can carry a sentence of up to 40 years. Aiding and abetting second-degree murder carries the same maximum punishment.
'Full investigation will take months'
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison said, "Winning this conviction will be hard, in fact, we're confident in what we are doing, but history does show there are clear challenges here, and we will be working very hard." The Floyd family's attorney Benjamin Crump said fully investigating the case "is going to take months." The bail for all four officers was set at $1 million.
What is the George Floyd case?
Floyd died on Monday after a police officer, Derek Chauvin (44), knelt on his neck for almost nine minutes. Floyd was being arrested for allegedly buying cigarettes with a counterfeit $20 note. Videos of the incident, where Floyd can be heard complaining "I can't breathe" and "Don't kill me," went viral. He was declared dead at a hospital a short time later.
Floyd's death sparked nationwide protests
Floyd's death sparked intense nationwide protests in the US. At several places, the demonstrations escalated into violence with reports of arson, looting, rioting, etc., that led to curfews. Multiple reports of police brutality have also surfaced including the violent act of the police in clearing a peaceful protest in Washington DC to allow the United States President, Donald Trump, a photo opportunity.
President Trump's daughter extends support to protests
In several states, National Guard troops have been activated to assist local law enforcement. The protests have reportedly quietened over the past few days and are mostly peaceful. Meanwhile, President Trump's daughter, Tiffany Trump, extended support to the protests by posting a "black square" on social media. However, critics argue the squares are clogging actual visuals and speeches from protests.